Rafael Tupayupanqui Vargas has been producing coffees for 50 years on the farm he inherited from his family. As a lifelong coffee producer, his favorite part of cultivating coffee is focusing on specialty production and finding new ways to improve quality. To this end, his goals include entering and winning quality competitions as a way to reach new buyers and acquire the capital to continue improving and updating his farm. Currently, the chief limiting factors on his production are the lack of labor during harvest time and the difficult of moving coffee to market on his back.
After selectively handpicking only ripe cherry, Rafael processes cherry on his farm the same day it is picked. He floats cherry to remove over and under-ripes. He then pulps cherry and ferments it in plastic barrels for 40 hours. Following fermentation, Rafael washes parchment in clean water and then lays it to dry on raised beds. He rakes drying parchment frequently to ensure even drying. It takes approximately 19 days for cherry to dry.