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Video: First Myanmar speciality tastings
Whereas a freshly brewed glass of Joe's favourite drink could make him a real tea party every single afternoon, October 1 was formally declared International Café Days by the International Association of Coffees, an international organisation. "The International Tea Festival is a truly international ceremony to celebrate the trip of tea from the farmyard to your business - an occasion to honour the men and woman who cultivate and reap the tea we love," says the ICA.
Approximately 80 per cent of the world's coffees are grown by around 25 million smallholders, most of whom are distributed throughout the poor. Its income and livelihood are susceptible to volatility in the worldwide coffeemarket, where pricing is often driven by deliveries from commercial café holdings or trade in commodities, which go far beyond its management .
Smallholders rely on speciality coffees to distinguish their products and provide a higher quality harvest. Burma will be exporting its first quantities of speciality coffees to the United States. With the growing market for top-quality coffees, smallholders may need to switch to a new range of best practice.
Burma is one of the youngest emerging markets to have adopted this tradition, and in August the first speciality coffees from the South East Asia region were offered for purchase in the United States. It was cultivated by smallholders as part of an agriculture education programme run by the U.S. Agency for International and Winrock International, a consulting firm.
Initial selling is important because of the new commercial possibilities they offer to growers, who receive higher rewards from specialist retailers. Cultivation methods used to make the speciality can also be modelled by smallholders in other parts of the globe who want to make similar profits.
Ms. Bert is the head of a creative storytelling staff that works with journalists around the world to address the issues of human rights, sustainability and overall healthcare.