It’s been five months since Cubans have seen coffee in state-run ration stores, but apparently there’s enough coffee grown in Cuba for the regime to sell to Italian coffee company Lavazza for hard currency. Once again we see the communist regime’s priorities lie in generating revenue for the Castro family dictatorship at the cost of the Cuban people. This is socialism in action.
Italian company Lavazza launches ¡Tierra! Cuba Reserve coffee
While this high-end product debuts in Madrid made with coffee beans from the island, Cubans have spent the last five months without receiving their coffee quota in their ration books.
In Madrid, Lavazza, one of the world’s leading coffee brands, launched ¡Tierra! Cuba Reserve, the new premium organic coffee from the ¡Tierra! Reserve line. This collection of sustainably sourced blends is dedicated to the hospitality sector and will be exclusively distributed by Espressa Coffee & More, Lavazza’s partner in the HORECA network (Hotels, Restaurants, and Cafés) in Spain since 2012, as reported by Europa Press.
In an event complete with Cuban music and a coffee show performed by Lavazza’s top baristas, the ¡Tierra! Cuba Reserve coffee took center stage for restaurateurs, distributors, and gastronomy enthusiasts who attended the event on October 10th. According to the aforementioned agency, “the new product offers a contemporary experience of sustainably sourced quality coffee that perfectly embodies the company’s values of social and environmental responsibility.”
Víctor Santos, Lavazza’s Regional Sales Manager, stated: “The Lavazza Foundation is one of the company’s main pillars and represents its commitment to sustainable development. The ¡Tierra! Cuba Reserve offers the best experience of Cuban-origin coffee to clients, hotels, and restaurants throughout Spain, through a project that contributes to the country’s development. Lavazza has the ambition to strengthen its position in Spain, becoming a leader in premium and super-premium coffee across all channels.”
The origins of this product trace back to 2018 in Cuba, where the Lavazza Group launched a sustainable development program through the Lavazza Foundation in collaboration with various local institutions and authorities. The Italian company aimed to revitalize coffee cultivation in the country and restore the quality of Cuban coffee to the levels of excellence that had made it famous worldwide. This would improve the socio-economic conditions of local coffee-producing communities, with special attention to women and youth, and develop good agricultural practices, all leading to higher coffee quality.
The ¡Tierra! Cuba Reserve contains beans cultivated by 170 farmers from the provinces of Santiago and Granma, who have been involved in the project by the Lavazza Foundation. It is a balanced blend of organic coffee composed of 65% washed Turquino Especial Arabica, 25% washed Robusta, and 10% fermented Robusta, giving the final product a sweeter and more elegant profile.
In 2019, as a tribute to Havana for its 500th anniversary, the Lavazza Foundation launched another coffee called ¡Tierra! Havana. This product also had as its background the cooperation project initiated in 2018 between the foundation and the Agroforestry Research Institute, with the support of the Agency for Economic Cultural Exchange with Cuba (AICEC).
In the last five months, Cubans have not received their allotted coffee quota as part of the basic food basket. In light of the severe coffee shortage on the Island, DIARIO DE CUBA recently reported how even in Guantánamo, a province known for coffee production, it is very difficult to find the product that the government continues to export.
Despite being a tradition, consuming this beverage has become a luxury for Cubans. Even the minimal amount they receive through regulated distribution is in jeopardy, as the imminent disappearance of the ration book seems increasingly likely.