Coffee atlas: El Salvador

Capital: San Salvador

Population: 6.16 million

Area: 21 thousand square km

El Salvador, the smallest country in Central America, is colloquially referred to as the ‘Land of Volcanoes’. Renowned for producing exceptional coffees with great clarity and sweetness. The coffee industry first took off after their primary crop, indigo, declined with the invention of chemical dyes in the 19th Century.

One of the great strengths of El Salvadoran coffee, it’s extensive use of Bourbon varietals, is also one of it’s key weaknesses. Unfortunately, these varieties are highly susceptible to a whole host of diseases.

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Coffee regions in El Salvador

Alotepeque-Metapan

Bordering Guatemala and Honduras, this region experiences the highest rainfall in El Salvador.

Common varietals: Pacas, bourbon, pacamara

Typical altitude: 1000–2000 m above sea level


Apaneca-Ilamatepec

The largest producing region of El Salvador and likely the area where coffee was first cultivated in the country

Common varietals: Bourbon, pacas

Typical altitude: 500–2300 m above sea level


Quezaltepec

The region is named after the indigenous civilisation that existed here pre-hispanic times. The Quetzalcotitán people are named after the god they worhsip, the feather covered serpent Quezalcoat.

Common varietals: Pacas, bourbon

Typical altitude: 500–1900 m above sea level


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