Source Trip to Papua New Guinea

Source Trip to Papua New Guinea
Land of the Unexpected
by Andrew Vournas

   Last week I had the privilege to visit Papua New Guinea for the second time. It was a fantastic trip seeing first hand just how hard it is to bring Papua New Guinea coffee from farms to market. My first day in PNG was actually a bit elusive. Having traveled 20 hours by plane to Goroka and losing a day crossing the dateline it actually takes 2 days to get there. This makes PNG the most remote coffee growing region in the world.
Day 1
Having survived the long Quantas 14 hour flight, and the two separate Air Niugini flights, I ended up in Goroka. After a few SP beers and some dinner I called it a night.
Day 2
I woke up early and Craig and Henry, our exporters, from Coffee Connections met me at the office. We cupped our next two shipments and were very pleased. The fantastic coffees will ship at the end of the month. Then I was treated to something special. We visited Henry Ame’s village Kefamo. Henry, who is the Village Chief or “Big Man”, drove me down the long road to Kefamo Village and the school where over 100 kids attend. I caused quite a scene as the kids were excited to see us or maybe it was because they got a break from school work. Having met all the teachers, I presented them with a bunch of school supplies such as paper, pencils and pens. They should be well stocked for quite awhile. What a fantastic job these teachers do at Kefamo School. The next generation of PNG depends on these kids and a better education will help them move forward. Later in the evening I was able to witness firsthand the Rugby spectacle called State of Origin. It was Queensland vs. New South Wales. Imagine the Superbowl hype, but a Rugby match. What fun it was! All of PNG and Australia come to a standstill for this one and for good reason. Imagine watching it with a bunch of PNG coffee guys with SP beer and marvelous meat pies. There was enough yelling and cursing – just my kind of fun!!!

To be continued….
Next month Day 3 and Day 4 – Purosa, Okapa and Morobe Coffee Areas