Grown in small villages all over PNG coffee is widely sought after by people from all over the world. The coffee produced in PNG has distinctive fruity and winey flavours is often blended with coffee beans from around the world.
PNG produces both Arabica and Robusta coffees with the majority (20-to-one ratio) being Arabica. There a numerous differences in the flavour between coffee producers in PNG – this has less to do with region and more to do with the way the coffee beans are processed.
PNG Location and climate
Papua New Guinea is a region of the southwestern Pacific Ocean, north of Australia. Its capital Port Moresby is located on the southwestern coast. PNG is geographically diverse and in place extremely rugged. During high tides parts of the island are inundated with water so lowland coffee growing is more rare. The PNG highlands are thick with rainforest making it the perfect environment for a thriving coffee industry. The Arabica coffee is grown inland at high altitudes due to the climate of PNG. Robusta (the more rare of the two) is grown in the lowlands where dense rainforests can also be found. The terrain has made it very difficult for roading and many areas are only accessible by foot or airplane.
Coffee is now grown in fifteen of the nineteen provinces in Papua New Guinea.
Why is the region so good for coffee?
The climate and rainfall, the rich soils, and the topography all combine to make perfect conditions for growing coffee plants. Typically the coffee is naturally produced due to the fact that synthetic fertilizer and pesticides are too hard to source and are very expensive.
Characteristics of a Fine Papua New Guinea Coffee
There are two main varieties of coffee produced in PNG – the kinds produced by larger estates for sale mainly in the USA market) which is made using the wet process. The second is the coffee produced by small farms, also using the wet process. Generally coffee produced in PNG is organic which makes it more desirable for export. The organic coffee tends to have a lower natural caffine level and less aciditiy. PNG coffee is typically rich in flavor with ripe citrus that is enveloped in sweetness. Due to being wet processed, PNG coffee is well balanced with a bright and clean taste. It has a classic sweetness and a complex and fruity aroma – with notes of mango and papaya.
The degree of roasting of the coffee beans has a significant effect on the coffee flavour and body. Darker roasts are stronger in taste as they have less fibre content and more sugary flavours. Lighter roasts have more complex flavours.