ENGLISH | 中文 | عربى

The new harvest season is here! Mountain men, are you ready?


When I was on my annual leave, I saw pictures from my Pu’er friends on social media featuring the beginning of harvest season at the processing plant. I certainly did not expect to feel this excited about it!

WechatIMG25.jpeg


Yes, the new harvest season has begun!

In the past two years, more and more coffee companies and enthusiasts have started paying attention to Yunnan coffee. We see farms collaborating with the company, individuals visiting the production area to learn about coffee or to hunt for beans, nearly every vendor at coffee expos are recommending Yunnan coffee, and many people are willing to pay for these coffee beans. All these aspects serve as a great motivation for staff at the front end of the coffee chain.

WechatIMG26.jpeg


During the last harvest season, I participated in the Mountain Man project initiated by Torch Coffee Company. I had the opportunity to be involved in processing fresh coffee with a bunch of passionate coffee professionals and coffee farmers. It was hard work, but more of a joyous experience. 

WechatIMG27.jpeg


WechatIMG28.jpeg
WechatIMG29.jpeg

It’s a once in a lifetime experience for me to get out of my comfort zone behind the bar counter. It is an open door for coffee enthusiasts to gain a deeper understanding of the coffee making process.

WechatIMG30.jpeg


To enter the production area, process batches of fresh fruit with coffee farmers, and gain firsthand information on the first batch of Yunnan coffee – it’s certainly an experience unlike any other.

WechatIMG31.jpeg


A local who had been trading Yunnan coffee for years told me, “Ever since Torch came to Pu’er two years ago, it impacted coffee farmers, became the driving force of the local industry, and brought about significant change for the better.” 

WechatIMG32.jpeg


Friends and coffee professionals told me, “Torch is helping coffee farmers and striving to improve the quality of Yunnan coffee.” Needless to say I am very pleased to hear such feedback, but at the same time, I feel more responsible towards our mission of growing together with coffee farmers in the industry!


Growing together with farmers in the industry is not an easy job, coffee processing is even harder and more complicated than I thought. 

WechatIMG33.jpeg


I were assign to station at Meng Lian last year during mountain man project, I were processing the coffee till late night, Miss Yap – the coffee farmer came to me, she tried to advise us not to work in the coffee industry, because it’s too hard! 

WechatIMG34.jpeg


The effort you put in for the whole harvest season might not even able to cover your cost. That’s the saddest part! I believe, helping farmer to grow shouldn’t be just a marketing gimmick for coffee company out there, Torch as a coffee company in the coffee origin, I believe we have the mission to constantly improve the coffee quality, by having mountain man annually, coffee farmer cupping session, to let the market recognize the value of Yunnan coffee, and payback to the upstream of the coffee chain who work really hard on it!

WechatIMG36.jpeg


Therefore, I hope that this new harvest season will be a new beginning for us, to draw on past experiences and strive to produce higher quality Yunnan coffee beans. The Mountain Man project for this new harvest season is separated into two phases. The first phase is a trial batch; we have more than 30 batches for 3D cross comparison, and will select high quality processing methods via cupping and detailed record analysis to be applied to the official production batch of the second phase.

WechatIMG37.jpeg
WechatIMG38.jpeg


Let’s take a look at what we are doing with our trial batch!







Drying thickness experiment

WechatIMG39.jpeg


Apart from washing, sun-dried and honey-processed coffee beans continue to ferment on the drying bed due to the presence of pulp or mucilage. The difference in thickness will affect the degree of fermentation and the rate of drying. The coffee beans are laid out to dry in different thicknesses, and the effects are recorded after cupping.

WechatIMG40.jpeg








Picking quality experiment

WechatIMG41.jpeg

We all know that the better the quality of the fresh fruit, the better the quality of the coffee beans; but do you know how the quality of a fruit affects the quality of a cup of coffee? We used a color sorter machine to divide the same batch of fresh fruit into two batches – "first grade" and "second grade". We also kept a batch of unsorted fresh fruit to compare the interesting cupping results of these three batches.










Washed fermentation experiment

WechatIMG42.jpeg

Washed coffee has the advantage of "clean and bright acidity", while its disadvantage is "low body". Will different fermentation medium and duration enhance the advantages and avoid the disadvantages? Let’s try and we’ll see!











Yeast fermentation experiment

WechatIMG43.jpeg

During the fermentation of coffee, yeast has a significant influence on coffee flavor. In the natural yeast experiment, we allowed fresh fruit to be dried for a different number of days, resulting in different fresh fruit water content, thus controlling the bacterial action during anaerobic fermentation. We’ll let the experiment results tell us the best time for fermentation.


In addition, we also sprinkled dry yeast on the surface of lower quality second grade beans, to compare them with first grade beans without yeast. Is it possible to improve the quality of second grade beans using the artificial process of sprinkling yeast?









Fresh fruit fermentation experiment

WechatIMG44.jpeg
WechatIMG45.jpeg

Harvested fresh fruit is subjected to anaerobic fermentation before conventional treatment, and compared with coffee beans that are not subjected to any fermentation. Through this experiment, we will examine how fresh fruit fermentation can affect a cup of coffee.


If you wish improve the quality of Yunnan coffee, join us today!

WechatIMG46.jpeg

What you need to know:

Despite the tougher living conditions, the mountain scenery and negative ions are worth it!

We’re looking for healthy and energetic individuals. After all, coffee processing is physical work.

Throughout the natural and artificial coffee drying processes, traceability is very, very, very important.




















































The Mountain Man project is a wonderful opportunity and platform for me to get out of my comfort zone behind the bar counter. It is an open door for coffee enthusiasts to gain a deeper understanding of the coffee making process.




















To enter the production area, process batches of fresh fruit with coffee farmers, and gain firsthand information on the first batch of Yunnan coffee – it’s certainly an experience unlike any other.