Papua New Guinea

by Joe Schnetzler

Papua New Guinea and Coffee

The Island

With a population of 8 million people, Papua New Guinea has become an important producer of coffee. Not popular domestically, a majority of all coffee produced domestically is shipped internationally. Split in two, the western part of the island of New Guinea is referred to as just Papua and is a apart of Indonesia and a big coffee producer as well. The eastern part is what encompasses what is referred to as Papua New Guinea aka PNG. 

History of PNG Coffee

Coffee was introduced in Papua New Guinea in the late 1800's by the Germans, it is believed. Initially, coffee in Papua New Guinea was used for botanical, research and science purposes until the late 1920's when large commercial efforts came about. Due to this, coffee farming in PNG is very saturated with many smaller farms compared to many other coffee producing countries that have large coffee plantations and commercial farms. This has lead to today, where over 50% of households are involved in the coffee industry in someway. 

The Coffee

Both Arabica and Robusta are grown in Papua New Guinea. 95% of coffee produced in PNG is of the Arabica bunch while the remaining 5% are of Robusta. Arabica is grown at high altitudes in PNG in the Inland Morobe, Eastern, Simbu and Western Highland provinces. Robusta is grown in the lowlands in PNG in the Sepik region, mainly. Coffee in Papua New Guinea has low to moderate acidity, modest, low toned richness and can be earthy at times. PNG coffee is not as aromatic as other coffee origins but is usually fruitier. Coffee in PNG is typically wet pressed and served best when french pressed or drip brewed due to the natural, high oil content of PNG coffee.