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Cup of Excellence returns to original campus setting to select top coffee.

UNITED STATES -- The Cup of Excellence (COE) program returned to a campus setting for its annual Brazil competition. The first competition was held in 1999 on a university campus in Lavras, Brazil with only a handful of cuppers. Eight years later, 31 international cuppers enjoyed the final selection week on campus at the Universidade Federal de Vicosa, one of the largest and most well known agricultural universities in Latin America.

Throughout the week, students and professors were seen mingling with cuppers as they exchanged viewpoints on the complexities of top coffees. In her ceremony speech, Susie Spindler, managing director for the Cup of Excellence, agreed with the university team to partner the Cup of Excellence with Vicosa's state of the art agronomics education, in order to complete the circle of coffee knowledge available to the farmers and students.

Of particular interest on campus is the study of specific varietals and how these affect quality. Coffees of the heirloom Bourbon variety won half of the awards in this competition, many more than would have been expected given their percentage in the Brazil specialty coffee production, indicating that its particular flavor profile may be critically important for top coffee.

The winning coffees did everything to live up to the expectations that the 2006 Brazil crop would have outstanding quality. After several weeks of very stringent cuppings, 29 coffee farmers received the coveted Cup of Excellence award. The first place farmer, Cicero Vegas Cavalcanti de Albuquerque of Fazenda Esperanca, was also a Presidential Award winner. The 14 of the 29 winners have won before, indicating that the quality of their coffee is not only great, but also very consistent. These valuable and rare coffee lots will be sold to the highest bidder during an open Internet auction beginning at 9AM Eastern standard time on January 16, 2007.

The Cup of Excellence program has become famous for the high prices paid to winning farmers, and for the rare and exemplary quality that these winning coffees represent. Last year the top coffee broke the record garnering $49.75/lb.
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Title Annotation:World News: Coffee and Tea Reports from the Front Line
Comment:Cup of Excellence returns to original campus setting to select top coffee.(World News: Coffee and Tea Reports from the Front Line)
Publication:Tea & Coffee Trade Journal
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2007
Previous Article:Branding origins.
Next Article:Utz Kapeh named new origin in El Salvador.

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