Ally Coffee specializes in exceptional coffees from Brazil, and we are proud to offer select microlots sourced through the new Minas Coffee Origins program. Minas Coffee Origins are three controlled coffee producing origins in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Mantiqueira de Minas, Matas de Minas, and Cerrado Mineiro share the characteristics of being growing regions protected by geographical indications or collective trademarks, which are controlled by local groups of coffee producers.
Minas Coffee Origins take specialty coffee to the next level. Controlled Origins are the product of the “terroir” produced in a demarcated area by the soil, climate, and topography characteristics combined with the production traditions of coffee growers.
These factors together generate coffee with inherent characteristics of the territory. To guarantee its authenticity, coffee must be produced following the official production process and controlled by an officially recognized association committed to help growers and the development of the coffee region.
This local governance over the production process to control a demarcated area and ensure traceability and quality standards creates both commercial and social impact. The Minas Coffee Origins initiative was developed in part by SEBRAE, Brazil’s Small Business Support Service. The program connects and supports the three controlled coffee regions within Minas Gerais.
Mantiqueira de Minas
Located in Southern Minas Gerais in the Serra de Mantiqueira mountains, the demarcated area is composed of 25 municipalities and officially recognized as a Protected Geographic Indication since 2011 for its high quality coffees produced between 600 and 1400 meters. The PGI demonstrates and guarantees that coffee from Mantiqueira is part of the territory’s culture, is produced in a demarcated area, and follows specific rules and regulations established to protect the identity of the regional heritage.The region is characterized by its small producers and the unique terrain of the land they farm. The most commonly cultivated varieties are Bourbon, Acaiá, Catuaí, Icatu, Novo Mundo, and Catucaí.
Most coffee producers own their farms and grow coffee on mountain slopes, where the land and people’s homes are filled with tradition and memories. Coffee is harvested manually to select the best and most ripe fruit. The spirit of the region reflects respect for ancestors, the pride of the community, and experience that is honored daily through continued coffee production. Producers in Mantiqueira de Minas adjust to current market needs while preserving the authenticity of their region. This spirit reflects their desire to evolve in order to achieve the highest standards of quality and produce rare and surprising coffees.
APROCAM is the entity that represents, controls, and promotes Mantiqueira de Minas and its Protected Geographical Indication through the participating cooperatives and producer unions. They describe the PGI seal as “a passport to the beautiful mountains and centennial farms in our region. We highlight the care for the environment and respect for our people. We also share our history, bringing together those who produce and those who consume. Roasters who sell coffees with the Indication of Origin Mantiqueira de Minas have at their disposal a powerful differentiation tool, offering the consumer an authentic and tasteful connection with the origin.”
Mantiqueira de Minas by the numbers:
- 8,200 producers
- 82% small producers
- 56,000 hectares in production
- 5 producer groups represented by APROCAM
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Matas de Minas
The Matas de Minas region is composed of 63 municipalities is located in the mild Brazilian Atlantic Forest climate of Eastern Minas Gerais. The coffee grows throughout the region's varied, mountainous topography on farms between 600 and 1450 meters. The region's family farms emphasize sustainability and the natural integration between people and land.
Many of the coffee farms in Matas de Minas are adjacent to forest and farming is both naturally sustainable and naturally artisanal. The handcrafted work and techniques developed by the growers in the region produces high quality coffees with a diversity of nuances and flavors. Many producing families in Matas de Minas have been farming coffee for more than 100 years and began as immigrants arriving from Europe in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This sense of family connection to the land, of living memories of what it took their predecessors to start lives and farms in a new place is the pride with which today’s producers continue farming coffee while caring for their property to leave it to their own children.
The Matas de Minas region is regulated by the Matas de Minas Coffee Association Council, a non-profit organization with representatives from the scientific, educational, and cultural communities. The Council’s purpose is to promote the artisanal quality, flavor diversity, and natural sustainability of Matas de Minas’ coffee production in pursuit of the collective and sustainable development of the region. They achieve this through disseminating knowledge and trainings to producers and strengthening collective value for communities and businesses in the region.
Matas de Minas producer interviews (practice your Portuguese!)
Matas de Minas regional overview (English text)
Matas de Minas by the numbers:
- 36,000 producers
- 80% small producers with less than 20 hectares
- 275,000 hectares in production
- 20+ Council partners and members
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The Cerrado Mineiro Region is an officially recognized and protected Designation of Origin for coffee. The demarcated area is composed of 55 municipalities in Northwestern Minas Gerais and includes farms from 800 to 1300 meters. Cerrado's climate and soil, together with the culture of coffee cultivation, lend unique attributes to the cup.
Cerrado Mineiro became the first Protected Geographical Indication in Brazil in 2005 and earned full Designation of Origin in 2013. There are more than 1,000 coffee producers representing nearly as many farms who are accredited by the Cerrado Coffee Growers Federation, the organization who oversees the Cerrado Mineiro Designation of Origin (DO) program.
To be sold with the Cerrado DO tag, coffees must meet several criteria. Producers must be up to date with their obligations to the federation and sign an agreement to follow Brazil’s social and environmental laws as well as adhere to best practices for farm management. The farm must be within the demarcated area of Cerrado Mineiro and coffee must be delivered to an accredited warehouse to maintain the chain of custody.
Cerrado Mineiro is a relatively new coffee producing region compared to other areas in Brazil, with farmers migrating to the Cerrado’s high, savannah-like plains in the 1970s after frosts devastated coffee production in the Paraná state. Producers had to work to build soil fertility over time and design farming techniques like irrigation to meet the climate needs of the region. Today, coffee production is thriving and farmers manage sustainability at scale, producing
Cerrado Mineiro by the numbers:
- 4,500 producers
- 234,000 hectares in production
- 102,000 hectares certified
- 85,000 hectares irrigated
- 7 member cooperatives
- 7 member associations
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The Minas Coffee Origins initiative highlights the collective work it takes to preserve the cultural heritage and environmental health of a region while pushing forward to cultivate innovative, delicious coffees. The coffees bearing a seal from the Mantiqueira de Minas, Matas de Minas, and Cerrado Mineiro PGI and DO programs are not only high quality and traceable, they represent the stories of individual families and the broader story of their region’s culture.
Ask us questions and request a sample if you would like to discover what makes Minas Coffee Origins special.