We founded Twin Engine Coffee in Nicaragua to ensure the integrity of the coffee we offer. From the plants in the mountains to the sun curing, roasting and packaging, we keep our eyes on the entire process. Both the beauty and the experiences in this region are intoxicating. Yet, producing our coffee locally is part of a bigger enterprise. It is about creating jobs, educating and generally effecting positive development on the ground while making superior coffee.
Nicaragua is a special place with beautiful flora and fauna, extraordinary coffee and kind hearts. In fact, Arabica coffee is Nicaragua’s #1 export. Surprisingly to some, Nicaragua produces some of the highest quality coffees in the world, but that has not translated into broad economic development. Coffee revenues come from green (raw) coffee and local profits typically do not leave the growing areas, creating few opportunities in the rest of the country. Overall, Nicaragua remains the poorest country in Central America.
Shockingly, many Nicaraguans never have the chance to taste the great coffees produced in the country! Specialty coffeeis rarely locally roasted. Even many of the coffee workers drink instant coffee. Many others drink coffee with a high percentage of defects. They rarely taste the best of what the country has to offer. We are changing that.
“Buy Local.” is a catchphrase popular in farmers’ markets and niche restaurants. But when it comes to coffee, most of us do not have the opportunity to grow our own coffee plants.
But, what does ‘local’ coffee mean? We pose this question because coffee is one of the unique crops in the world where production occurs almost entirely outside of where it is consumed. To be more specific, more than three-quarters of all premium coffees produced in the world are enjoyed in Europe, North America and East Asia where nearly no coffee is cultivated.
For us, local coffee is cured, cared for, tested, tasted, and roasted where it is grown. Local people using their skills to care for their local coffee is reminiscent of the Cognac, Burgundy, and Habanos producers who take pride in the products grown and crafted in their regions. We are not trying to shift the global coffee balance—however, we are trying to shift the view of local coffee and who can participate.
As Twin Engine Coffee, we have rooted ourselves in the community with the earnest mission of finding the best coffees of Nicaragua, building coffee expertise in our community and offering these coffees locally and to others around the world who would like a taste of that experience. We are contributing to Nicaragua’s development from the inside.