Hudson Salvador Vilela wasn’t new to agriculture when he purchased Fazenda Colina in 1999. Having years of experience in keeping livestock, Hudson and his family wanted more. Their dream of farm diversification led them to coffee. And in particular, specialty coffee.
Right after purchasing the 500 hectares farm, Hudson started his journey in coffee with his family. They reserved 80 hectares of land and started to grow specialty coffee. Besides coffee, the Vilela family still keeps beef cattle.
The Vilela’s honor nature and the well-being of their employees. The preservation of the natural environment is one of their main concerns. As stewards of nature, they protect and keep the many springs, waterfalls, and trees intact. The Vilela’s conserve 30% of Fazenda Colina.
If the terrain allows it, the Vilela’s harvest coffee using high-end machines. Then they sort the coffee cherries by density on the day of picking. And after sorting, the Vilela’s classify and designate coffee cherries for natural or pulped natural processing.
Natural cherries dry for 12 days and reach a target humidity of 12%. Alternatively, some lots will only dry for 3 to 5 days on the patio until they reach 18% humidity. After that, these specific coffees continue drying in large mechanical dryers.
For pulped naturals, the processing is slightly different. On arrival, large pulpers peel the skin off: following the widespread method of non-fermented pulping. The pulping machines partially remove the mucilage. Then the sticky parchment dries on the patio, where employees regularly turn the coffees. Farmers in Brazil call this turning and stirring fruit rolling.
As a rule, all lots start drying on the patio, and some coffees need mechanical dryers to reach the right humidity. Either way, every coffee is thoroughly measured on humidity throughout the process.
In a year, the Vilela’s produce 1900 bags of coffee. However, their work does not only result in large volumes but also great tasting specialty coffee. The many awards and prizes for Fazenda Colina are proof: