BRAZIL: CHAPADA DIAMANTINA
Brazil’s Chapada Diamantina is as unique and interesting a coffee origin as you’ll find anywhere in the world. The tracts of land littered with abandoned diamond mines and surrounded by rocky canyon cliffs and waterfalls were designated as a national park in the 1980’s, but the history of the region, the state of Bahia, and its capital city Salvador, are integral to the cultural inheritance of the entire nation.
In terms of coffee, the Chapada Diamantina region is vastly different from the flat plains of Cerrado or Mogiana or the gently rolling hills of Sul de Minas. The region is remote and rural, and while large-scale farming does exist here, there is a higher ratio of smaller scale farms. Here, one will often see more crop diversity in terms of both intercropping and uncommon coffee cultivars. Sustainable practices have taken hold here, too – Bahia is Brazil’s leading producer of biodynamic agriculture, a holistic practice that attempts to bring order, balance, and spirituality to practice in organic cultivation. Biodynamic agriculture is the oldest consciously organic approach to farming and gardening and is one of the most sustainable in existence.