The Adventure Begins | Peru Part 1

Posted on January 14, 2020

Laird Hamilton in Peru

The journey from bean to cup is no short ride. In early 2019 Laird planned a trip to Peru to surf the legendary Puerto Chicama waves and visit the coffee farms where we source our beans. The farms we work with in Peru are all high-altitude, and the beans are handpicked and dried on-site. It was an honor to meet the local farmers and witness the passion they have for their work. 

Watch the video recap of our first day in Peru below, and read on to learn about the day in detail! 

During our time in Peru, our team learned about the intensive process the growers work through to produce some of the best beans in the world. It was an honor to see the dedication, thoughtfulness, and love the team puts into their work. 

Laird Superfood and Peru

On day one, our team of four flew into Lima, Peru and then traveled to meet Laird in Trujuilo, a coastal city. Once the whole team was together we flew an hour northeast, leaving the arid and rocky terrain and entering the lush mountains of the Andes, landing on a tiny strip in Mendoza.

In Mendoza we were greeted by the farm owner, who warmly welcomed us, and lead the way to visit his land. On the way to the farm we stopped at a small town to visit a warehouse called the Monteverde Facility, where all of the local farms store their beans before shipping them to businesses and coffee shops around the world. It was amazing to see how the local farms work together and support each other.

Our team hopped back into the truck and headed to the small farm, about 40 minutes from the town. Here we learned about the growing process, the plants, dug some soil, checked out drying areas, and visited the neighbor's small farm. We already knew a lot about coffee bean production, but to actually witness it opened our eyes to the meticulous dedication required to produce flavorful coffee beans.

Coffee farm in Trujillo, Peru

Coffee production requires an extensive process of converting the raw fruit of the coffee plant into the finished coffee bean. The coffee cherry must have the fruit or pulp removed, and then the seed must be set out to dry. We only source beans from high-altitude coffee plants, as it is commonly understood that high altitude beans produce more rich and flavorful coffee. This is because, at high altitudes, the coffee beans grow more slowly due to harsh conditions, and therefore have more time to develop complex sugars.

After a fun morning at the first farm, we enjoyed lunch and then headed to the next farm we work with, about an hour away. To accommodate high-demand, we source our beans from a few farms in this region. The second farm we visited felt more like a jungle. There were creeks running through it, which made it a bit more challenging to walk through. The natural setting of this farm was astoundingly gorgeous, and we enjoyed another cup of coffee as we met with the people that worked at this location.

We closed out the day with a light dinner and settled in for the night at our charming cottage on the farm.

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