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The Best Coffee in Panama Sets Record in Online Auction at $21 a Pound
Press release from Specialty Coffee Association of America, Date: July 17, 2004
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LONG BEACH, Calif. U.S.A. (July 16, 2004)---Panama's number one coffee, "Esmeralda Special" from Hacienda La Esmeralda, set an online coffee auction record when it sold for $21 dollars a pound on June 29th. Esmeralda Special placed first in the "Best of Panama" cupping competition in April with a score of 95.6 out of 100. Two of the competition's American judges, Danny O'Neil of The Roasterie in Kansas City, and John Sanders of Hines Public Market Coffee in Seattle, were so impressed with Jaramillo that they formed a buying group along with Groundwork Coffee in Los Angeles and were determined not to be out bid to win seven bags of this extraordinary coffee from the mountains of Western Panama.

Competition was intense during the internet auction on June 29th as it became clear early on that several bidders were after the small lot of seven 60-kilo bags of Panama's best coffee. When the auction closed, Esmeralda Special from Hacienda La Esmeralda had sold for an unheard of $21 a pound. Commercial-grade coffee is currently trading in commodity markets for around 73 cents a pound.

Following the auction, arrangements were made to split the seven bags between The Roasterie, Hines Public Market Coffee, Groundwork Coffee, Stumptown Coffee, Intelligentsia Coffee Roasters, G.H. Howell Co., and Sweet Maria's. Each of the seven bags contain approximately 130 pounds of green coffee.

Days after the auction, Price Peterson of the Hacienda La Esmeralda in Boquete, said, "Here at Hacienda La Esmeralda we are still sort of numb and in shock at our good luck and that people appreciate our coffee so much. We're encouraged that there are roasters who are not only willing to talk quality, but then actually show the world they are willing to pay for it. We are very appreciative and encouraged to go on working for the perfect cup."

The online auction was hosted by the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA). Ten additional lots totaling over 18,000 pounds of high scoring coffee from the "Best of Panama" were also sold in the online auction, fetching prices from $1.25 to $2.53 a pound. To view the results of the auction and find more information about the farms, visit:

Click Here (auction.stoneworks.com)

To learn more about Hacienda La Esmeralda visit http://www.haciendaesmeralda.com/

To learn more about the Best of Panama visit http://www.panamacoffee.org/index.htm

To contact Los Angeles, CA-based Groundwork Coffee call 1 (888) 826-3333

To contact Seattle, WA-based Hines Public Market Coffee call 1 (206) 230-1426

To learn more about The Roasterie visit http://www.theroasterie.com/

To learn more about SCAA visit https://www.scaa.org/

SCAA Press Contacts:

Mike Ferguson/Aaron Kiel                                                                                

(562) 624-4100/ (562) 983-8113      

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