Journey to Pangalengan in Southern side of Bandung are mark by no traffic which usually always happens acrros Jalan Kopo. Among of the participants of “West Java Origin Tour” which was held by SCAI (Specialty Coffee Association of Indonesia)  are : Rahmad Syakib from  IFC (International Finance Corporation),monetary institution for micro economic business from World Bank, Coffee Toffie, Heri Setiadi from Cafe La Tazza, Kasmito Maharaja Coffee, Executive Director of SCAI Ina Muwarni, Yunus from  Roswell dan and ofcourse the host Michael Utama from Morning Glory. The silver with modern architecture building is our first visit last saturday. This is building are the central processing unit that Morning Glory own and managed. It is located in desa Cibiana, on the road side of jalan raya Pangalengan.

Yesterday we were presented with Kopi Aroma dan listens to Widya Pratama about her business philosophi and watching her roasting facilities and also her warehouse. On that same day, this group also going straight to Morning Glory Cafe in Setrasari Mall Kav C2/31, Bandung  dan met the owners, Nathnael Charis (Nael) dan Michael. Both have been friends for a long time and both is an ex-wdding photographers qhich eventually join in the coffee bussines.

Nathanel Charis
A little background checks for Nael, who is doesn’t even like coffee, but since got an “epiphany” when he tasted a super-delicious coffee in America were its originally came from Indonesia. He was amazed by the fact that Indonesian coffee taste really good in other nation rather than in his homeland. That couriousity tingle him to search even more information about it on upon visiting a local plantation nearby his house in Bandung, which is located in Pengalengan. Thus, since 2014 he began to make his first “friendship” with local elders there whereas no prevail. The host doesn’t wanna gave this info to a city boy who is sitting in his front porch.

Exported Codde to Australia
He never give up on his curiousity as he seeks more knowledge and intensive in his quest on Pengalengan sire which is located about 900 metres above sea level. Until eventually he got an opportunity to learn how to roast coffee in 2007 at Australia and then decided to open Morning Glory Café and Roasting Facilities back in 2008.On 2010, Morning Glory makes history as they managed to export 20 tons coffee for the first time ever to Australia. Beside embroiled in coffee processing, now Morning Glory also equipped their facility with Barista School and also as a distributor for La Marzocco, a espresso coffee machine.

Coffee Farmers in Pengalengan & Morning Glory
Standing on this 5000 metres of land in Pengalengan, maybe this is the first and largest coffee processing which is almost complete in construction. According to Michael, soon this site will be operate to procces unhulled coffee beans that has been peeled and dried, but still have its outer skin or parchment (endocarp).

What is the reasein for unhulled coffee? According to Michael, this is one of many ways to help the farmers raised their selling price for this products. In this process, the farmers have to do peeling (pulper), fermentation (if neccesary), and then dry it before it can be processed in this Morning Glory facilities, whereas this place only does huller process, sortation, and storage for green beans.

Coffee Farmers Passion in Pangalengan
In a discussion with the assisted farmers of Morning Glory, there is couple of challenges and opportunity that lies in front of them for sometimes. Coffee cultivation arises since three years ago due to arabica market that increases. The farmers who is usually cultivate on vegestables are starting to grow coffee beans on Perhutani soil with an agreement whereas 15% of its profit would be given to this state-owned enterprise.

With a land consist with more than forty thousand acres of soil, Pengalengan poseses a veiled potential and appealing export commodities and lots of coffee industries. Price wars and unhealthy competition are happening, but for local farmers this turns out to be their advantages. Still it not always happy side happens as sometimes they find problems before harvesting. Local farmers explain that they have to sell their crops early before harvest because of maintenance cost has to be fulfilled. Also their own health care and education for their children.

Coffee Farmers Mathematics
Today price for raw coffee beans is about IDR 6 or 7 thousand perkilograms and from one acres of farm, the farmers can harvest about one tons. So, in one harvesting the farmers at least get about IDR 6 million and if harvesting comes 2 times (May and October)  they can get IDR 12 million.

Yet, this is their gross income because the maintenance cost can extend to 30 to 40% of their harvest. This is illustration if they only sell red coffee beans. Morning Glory came to help the farmers by assiting and encourage them to sell unhulled coffee beans rather than red coffee beans. This would increase the selling price from the farmers up to IRD 12 thousand per kilograms.

Ina Muwarni from SCAI gave a financial solution in order to help farmers. Farming mechanicasion is one of the goals for micro finance in order to increase productivity and quality of the farmers, a programme that has been develop by several banks recently.

Arabican Coffee Central Development in Kubang Sari Pangalengan
The last trip is visiting arabica coffee farm in Kubang Sari, approximately 10 km from Morning Glory site. Next to tea plantation, this land, owned by Perhutani, is being develop into arabica coffee cultivation site.

With swerly roads, eventough not to rough, the car that I was in plunged into a ditch and resulting making a havoc for traffic on the other side, thanks to the “brilliant”driver. We managed to apprehend this with the help from local people. The tire has torn so we have to change it. Other disaster soon to be happened. Despite this is a journey for coffee, we cannot enjoy the drinks. There isn’t any except for unhulled coffee beans.

So there you go. A little picnic note from Bandung and Pengalengan, a journey that was held by SCAI last weekend.

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