The United States imported about 27.5 million bags of coffee in 2014, accounting for nearly a quarter of all global coffee imports, making it the world's largest single buyer. One of the biggest and most well known coffee producers across the globe, resulting in perhaps the tastiest coffee cup around, is Colombia.
Colombia's average annual coffee production of 11.5 million bags is the third highest in the entire world, after Brazil and Vietnam, though highest in terms of the popular arabica bean.
Hundreds of thousands of Colombians work in the coffee trade, but even that isn't enough to keep up with the harvest and global demand. Currently, Colombia lacks between 60,000 and 90,000 coffee pickers, leading to rotting crops all over the country. Since many Colombians are relocating from the mountains into cities, there aren't enough able bodies for the thriving coffee industry.
"Labor is more scarce all the time," said Roberto Velez, head of the coffee growers' federation.
According to Reuters, a new agricultural tool is now able to help Colombian farmers maximize their product output, without relying on workers as much. The DSC-18, developed by the coffee growers' federation and Brazilian machinery company Brudden, was built specificity for the steep slopes of Colombian coffee country.
There are two vibrating silver tongs attached to the DSC-18, which are strong enough to knock ripe coffee berries off a branch and light enough not to disturb fruits that have yet to mature.
"It's a great tool, said Mauricio Giraldo, owner of an 86-acre farm in the southern mountains of Huila. "It's an opportunity to reduce production costs and not lose coffee in high season when we can't find workers."
The DSC-18 could potentially save Colombian farmers 20% in expenses. Conversely, workers' who remained in the industry will likely see their salaries rise.
From the trees of Colombia to a tasty coffee cup on kitchen tables across the globe, the coffee sector will likely enjoy plenty of success in the near future. If you want to find quality coffee cups for your own business, as well as stir sticks, lids, and other coffee accessories, give Hot Cup Factory a call right away.