Ricardo Koyner, producer of Panama Duncan Estate, is one of the finest organic coffee producers Stumptown has ever worked with. Koyner’s focused commitment to his Kotowa farm allows for the high yields and tremendous quality that most organic producers are unable to attain.

The Kotowa farm produces ‘Cafe Duncan’, which is named after Ricardo Koyner’s grandfather Alexander Duncan MacIntyre who came to Panama from Canada in 1913. Alexander read a newspaper article about an unexplored mountainous area on a mysterious volcano in the region of Boquete in the distant country of Panama. His curiosity led him to visit the region where he fell in love with the area, the people and the magic of the valley. For four generations, Alexander’s family has cultivated and processed coffee in the same traditional way.

Ricardo Koyner protects the virgin forests around the Kotowa farm as a natural habitat for many birds, both local and migratory. To ensure that the birds continue to thrive, Ricardo planted more than 500 indigenous trees that produce fruits and nuts which the birds consume. Due to its geographic location and small size, Panama has more bird species than all of North America and Europe together.

Koyner provides free medical attention for the people that work for him.  He has a nursery with meals and a school program for the kids.  Their social programs for the kids and the people that help produce the coffee earned the recognition from UNICEF.

Farm Details

Kotowa farm is located in Volcancito de Boquete de Chiriqui in northern Panama. Kotowa means ‘mountains’ in the native indigenous language. The correct combination of rain, wind, sunshine, clouds and cool temperatures promote a great tasting cup character. Ricardo’s farm is perched on the southern facing slopes of the Baru Volcano with views of the Pacific Ocean on one side and the Continental Divide on the other.

At the Kotowa Mill, all the production and processing is done in consideration of the environment. The ecological mill uses only one liter of water per pound of green coffee, much lower than the 10-20 liters used by many other mills in the world. All of the byproducts from the milling activity (i.e. pulp, waste water, etc.) are used to produce the organic fertilizer which is used in the Duncan organic farm. Ricardo processes his coffee using Penagos systems to remove mucilage. He then puts the coffee into fermentation tanks for another ten hours to fully remove any remaining solids from the beans. He dries coffee on raised beds back at the Duncan farm before resting the coffee for 90 days in a wooden silo that has a controlled atmosphere of 65% humidity at 59F degrees. The controlled atmosphere is very important for the development of the bean’s flavor. The latter two steps are what bring such a special characteristic to the Duncan Estate coffee profile.