NKG Bloom “Mad Mash”

By: Dana Foster

NKG Bloom is an initiative of Neumann Kaffee Gruppe (NKG) to ensure the long-term viability of green coffee supplies by providing smallholder farmers with the opportunities and resources they need to run their farms at full potential and enter a pathway out of poverty.

Participating farmers are smallholders, and they commit to collaborating with our teams to run their farms as businesses and improve upon prioritized social and environmental practices.

As a member of the NKG family, Atlas is thrilled to offer Bloom coffees from the program in Mexico.

When the coffee rust crisis hit Mexico in 2012, production fell by 70 percent, severely affecting smallholder coffee farmers who contribute 90 percent of Mexico’s coffee production. There were strong arguments for getting out of coffee: high investment costs, negative yields after pulling up old trees, lack of access to suitable and healthy seedlings, and high demand for expertise and labor. Additionally, price and production fluctuations left farmers in high-risk and vulnerable situations.

In this environment, Exportadora de Café California (ECC) designed and implemented a program to secure the sustainable production of Mexican coffee and improve thousands of farmers’ livelihoods, enabling them to continue growing coffee for years to come. ECC’s vision was to reposition coffee production as the main driver of the social economy in coffee regions.

ECC’s Por Más Café program, now part of NKG Bloom, offers producers seedlings (ECC has grown more than 31 million plants in its nursery to date), technical and agricultural assistance, access to high-quality fertilizers and inputs, access to financing, and a guarantee of coffee purchasing to ensure a healthy future for coffee in Mexico. The program has helped renew nearly 5,000 hectares in Mexico, has worked with more than 4,500 producers, and has helped turn around lives and businesses in Mexico.

Our second season of Bloom offerings is “Mad Mash,” produced by a group of smallholder farmers in the region of Chimhucum ( “Two Rivers” in the Tzotzil language), located in Los Altos, the upper area of Chiapas. The population is 100% indgenous, speaking Tzotzil. The Tzotziles (Tsotsiles) and the Tzeltales (Tseltales) are two related Mayan groups that, together with the Tojolabales, inhabit Los Altos and some municipalities in the surrounding area.

The coffee is grown under shade trees in the mountains of Los Altos, including Sarchimor, Caturra, and Catuai varieties. The farms are treated with sustainable practices, such as compost and water treatment. This settlement is in the highest part of the region, which is why it is characterized by a normally humid and cold climate for much of the year. This creates a microclimate for an exceptional flavor in the cup.

The producers use artisanal processes such as hand depulping, fermentation tanks, and sun drying. The most peculiar thing regarding this coffee is that the producers do semi-washed processing, as they only ferment the coffees between six to 12 hours, creating unique flavors.

“Mad Mash” is a combination of English and Tzotzil. Mad in Tzotzil is monkey, so Mad Mash means Crazy Monkey. The name was inspired by a joyous drive to Chimhucum by our exporter partner Andreas Kussmaul.

We’re excited to offer Bloom coffee from these producers, landing in June on the West Coast for shipment from The Green Room. The preshipment sample was outstanding, with notes of cherry, mango, lemon-lime, raspberry, peach, jasmine, and green apple with a bright, juicy acidity and full, syrupy body. We cannot wait to taste the arrival!

Ready to roast? Get in touch or view our offering lists below.

Offering List