IN PICTURES: Find out how this Saudi province in Jazan celebrates coffee trees
Saudi Arabia’s al-Dayer Bani Malek province in the Jazan region is specialized in cultivating coffee trees that produce high quality Khoulani coffee, one of the finest types of coffee in the world.
Saudi Arabia produces the most important types of coffee in the world, where the mountains of Jazan, south of the kingdom, boast agricultural wealth, while placing the coffee tree in the forefront.
The tree was described by experts as green gold, and reports indicated that Jazan Mountains embrace more than 54,000 coffee trees farmed by 600 Farmers and produce about 500 tons annually.
Jazan farmers are known for their care and passion over the coffee tree, and they are looking to access the world by this product.
The nature of the mountainous region is rich with coffee trees and the atmosphere is conducive for the coffee tree to grow.
The coffee bean is cultivated about 800 meters above sea level, but harvesting this crop needs special attention so as not to break any branch while harvesting, as the branches are where the seeds grow again, which is known to any expert farmer.
Jazan farmers are specialized in cultivating coffee trees, and the skill has been passed down to many generations. Thus, the number of the coffee trees reached 54,000 trees in the governorate and the number of the farmers reached more than 500 in al-Dayer province only.
Farmer Salman bin Salem describes the cultivation and the harvesting of the coffee seeds, stating that it needs about three years to begin fruition, and about six months to turn into a grain and turn gradually to a dark red, which indicates that it is ready for harvesting.
After harvesting the coffee seeds, the drying phase starts in special shaded places, where the seeds needs to be stirred for about three weeks. Drying it slowly makes the seed keep its taste. They then start another phase in the mills including peeling, separating the seeds of coffee from the crusts and then the roasting and grinding stages.
Coffee is one of the most famous products that al-Dayer is known for, in addition to the Eastern mountainous districts in Jazan.
A coffee festival is held in the region, where this year will be its sixth edition, in order to support the cultivation of coffee and attract tourists and visitors.
There are more than 77,000 coffee trees in the Eastern Mountain area in Jazan. The number of the farmers who cultivate coffee has increased to 724 farmers in all the mountainous governorates, while last year produced 227 tons and is expected to reach 360 tons this year.
Fifty coffee farmers are expected to participate in the festival, and present Khoulani coffee products.
Saudi Aramco has also created an initiative for cultivation and production of coffee where they stated that the initiative enhanced the capabilities of the coffee farmers and trained them on the most recent scientific developments in cultivating and harvesting coffee to reach the specifications of a high quality product.
The initiative will include cultivating more than 8500 seedlings with integrated irrigation systems, providing irrigation networks for those farms and establishing a coffee production factory as part of the Aramco initiative.