May 23, 2024

TABUK CITY, Kalinga – The cup of coffee brewed from the Robusta beans of farmer Pablo Dao-wan emerged best in the 2024 Kalinga Coffee Quality Competition. 

Sourced from Barangay Lay-asan in the municipality of Tanudan, the winning coffee garnered a cupping score of 82 with cupping notes of dried berries, mangosteen, honey, tamarind, orange, pineapple, and citrus.

QUALITY COFFEE — Certified coffee graders conduct a sensory evaluation of the entries in the 2024 Kalinga Quality Coffee competition, as the declared winners later received certificates, cash prizes, and farming implements during the awarding ceremony on Feb. 15. — Kalinga PIO

Bagging second place  is Crispin Gayagay, also from Tanudan, whose coffee beans got a cupping score of 80.1 with flavor notes of caramel, nutty, cinnamon, tangerine, citrus, prunes and tea-like.

In third place is Jonathan Itong whose Robusta from Lubuagan garnered a cupping score of 80 with cupping notes of roasted peanuts, dark chocolate, and caramel.

Meanwhile, the lone entry in the Arabica category submitted by Lioba Busway from Upper Uma, Lubuagan received special citation as it garnered a cupping score of 83.5. The coffee had cupping notes of tangerine, tamarind, lemon, passion fruit, tea-rose, and honey.

Busway’s coffee beans sold for P700 per kilo at the post-competition auction. Dao-wan’s Robusta sold at P230 per kilo,  much higher than the usual farm gate price of P150-160 per kilo, according to Jeffrey Pasikan, Department of Trade and Industry-Kalinga coffee program focal person.

Launched last year, the Kalinga Coffee Quality Competition not only serves as a leverage for coffee farmers to earn higher profits, but foremost a platform to recognize those who follow good agricultural practices, thereby helping elevate the quality of Kalinga coffee and contribute to the revival of the industry.

“The ultimate aim is to give due credit and recognition to the Kalinga farmers who endeavor very well to continue the coffee agriculture, and adhere to all the government assistances, trainings nga naited,” Pasikan said.

The competition, with its strict rule that entries must be of Kalinga origin, also aims to boost production of local varieties, the supply of which is being threatened by the influx of imported coffee from Vietnam, Pasikan said.

“The idea is to support and protect the authenticity of Kalinga coffee because we all know that the supply of Kalinga coffee is dwindling,” he said.

The 2024 Kalinga Coffee Quality Competition was a collaborative event of the Kalinga Provincial Coffee Council composed of national line agencies, the private sector, the provincial government and the city and municipal local governments. It was one of the highlights of the 29th Kalinga founding anniversary and 5th Bodong Festival.

Pasikan hopes that the 2025 edition will see the complete participation  of coffee farmers from all the municipalities. – Iryll Gay O. Sicnao