Arabica coffee originates from Ethiopia, where we found the greatest genetic diversity of the species. In the 15th and 16th century, there were introduced coffee trees from Ethiopia to Yemen, where the crop developed. Then, in the 18th century, some seeds or plants from Yemen to Java, which gave rise to the “Typica” (also called Arabian, Creole, or Indian) lineage.

Typica plants reached the Caribbean and then spread throughout the Americas during the 18th century. There were Seeds introduce from Yemen to the island of Bourbon, giving rise to the category “Bourbon.”

Bourbon variety

The first Bourbon-type plants arrived in the Americas through Brazil starting in 1850. They are associated with a high cup quality, but are susceptible to most diseases and pests. Landraces of Ethiopian (also called “Ethiopian Race”) are the plants that developed in the forests of Ethiopia or in the coffee plantations of Ethiopia, where the Arabica species originated, through a process of domestication carried out by the coffee farmers.

They are associated with high cup quality, but are susceptible to most diseases and pests.


In the 17th century, the Sultan of Yemen presented the King of France, Louis IV, with coffee trees originating from Bourbon Island, hence its name.

Bourbon Island is a French colony occupied in 1638 and renamed “Isle Bourbon” by decree of Louis XIII, who was from the “Borbon” dynasty.

Louis XIII was the King of France, Navarre and Prince of Andorra. In 1793, the Bourbon dynasty was overthrown and the name changed to Reunion Island.

Reunion Island, and is located to the east of Madagascar, and as it usually coincides, it is a fertile volcanic land with a tropical climate.

Currently the island is not as relevant in terms of coffee production.

Some of those plants were taken to French Colonies in America.

Where is Bourbon Coffee Grown?

There are important crops in terms of production in Burundi, Rwanda and Latin America.

Because it is one of the first known varietals, it became a widespread coffee variety, which later spawned other varietals and varieties.


There are three types of Bourbon grown, mainly in America: Red Bourbon, Pink Bourbon, and Yellow Bourbon.

High quality coffee, medium yield and sweet taste. Chocolate, caramel and dried fruit notes.

It is not very resistant to diseases such as Broca, Raya and pests. Consequently, it is a varietal with low productivity.

It is cultivated between 1,000 and 1,800 meters above sea level.


It is the most common of the three types of Bourbon. The fruit in this case is a dark reddish color.

Its Fragrance and Aroma: Caramel, citrus grapefruit, vanilla, light floral.

Taste and Aftertaste: Vanilla, initial fruit, some chocolate, spicy, medium-high citric acidity, medium dense body.


Some time ago, it became one of the most widely produced varietals worldwide, but it has been replace by higher-yielding crops due to its low productivity.

Some farms in Brazil allocated hectares of their cultivation to Yellow Bourbon so that the variety of their productions would not disappear.

It also has special characteristics because its fruit does not have a large amount of fructose, resulting in a grain with floral notes similar to jasmine, with body and low acidity.


Bourbon Rosado coffee is a genetic mix between Red and Yellow Bourbon.

In this case, the ripe fruit is pink. This varietal is highly sought after due to its genetic rarity and the difficulty it has to be cultivate and harvest.


Geisha is an original variety of coffee discovered in the 1930s in the mountains around a town called Geisha, in southeastern Ethiopia. Geisha trees grow tall; their beautiful elongated leaves can distinguish them. When grown at extremely high altitudes the quality of this coffee is drastically improve.


The beloved Caturra was the first natural mutation of coffee found, a mutation of a bourbon, which resulted in a dwarf plant of great production considering its size.

Discovered in the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil, its adaptability helped it spread throughout South and Central America. Being short, it allows coffee growers to grow more plants per square meter compared to a taller variety such as the typical or Bourbon, this quality was used to develop the Catimores, which are regional varieties resulting from a cross between Caturra he Timor hybrid. Later also the Colombia variety and the popular Castillo variety in Colombia were direct descendants.

In Colombia, the Caturra arrived around 1952, immediately achieving great popularity, thanks to its low size and planting density that facilitates cultivation. Most of the plantings with this variety was carried out without shade, popularizing the false idea that Caturra requires the elimination of shade.


Introgression varieties are those that possess some genetic traits of another species, in this case, canephor or “Robusta”. (“Introgression” means, “brought in.”) In the 1920s, were bred an Arabica and a Canephor on the island of East Timor to create a new material, now known as Timor Hybrid. This material was an Arabica variety that contained Canephor genes that allowed the plants to have resistance to rust. Coffee experts realized the value of this rust resistance and began using the Timor Hybrid in experiments to create new varieties that could be rust resistant. They selected different Timor Hybrid “lines” and then crossed them with short-statured, high-yielding Arabica varieties, Caturra. These crosses (Timor X Caturra Hybrid) led to the creation of the main groups of introgested Arabica varieties: Catimores and Sarchimores. It is important to note that contrary to common belief, neither Catimor nor Sarchimor are themselves distinct individual varieties. Many of these varieties in this catalogue. These varieties have traditionally been associated with lower cup quality, but have been essential for coffee growers in the region, for whom rust is a major threat. Varieties Hybrids F1, in general a hybrid is the living animal or plant organism from the crossing of two genetically different organisms. Per this catalogue, new generation of coffee varieties F1 hybrids were created by crossing two genetically distinct Arabica parents.

Category: Blog

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