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TransFair USA is excited to announce the first ever Fair Trade Certified Cupping Competition and Auction. All ten Brazilian Fair Trade Certified Arabica producing cooperatives will be submitting samples to be judged in the competition. The goal of the event is to showcase high quality Fair Trade Certified coffee produced in Brazil and provide Fair Trade Certified licensees access to the best coffees at origin. Buyers will have the opportunity to sample, meet producers, and bid on the winning coffees through a closed auction. In addition, TransFair USA is organizing a four day excursion following the auction for those who wish to visit coffee producing cooperatives in Minas Gerais. The international jury will be grading coffees from October 20th to October 24th. We will hold a tasting, auction and awards ceremony in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais on Friday, October 24th. This event provides an opportunity to meet with producers and producer organizations, sample the award-winning coffees and place bids on your favorites.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Brazilian Food

Just a small clarification for anyone who thought we were serious about the strict food regime of bread and water for the judges-we've been eating some wonderful meals. The joke was more about cupping competition director Silvio Leite and his stellar attention to detail and procedure. There are however some guidelines for diet when cupping. Things you want to avoid the night before and day of the cupping include onions, garlic, hot peppers, and alcohol. While those ingredients have been absent for the most part from our meals, the food has been delicious.

Brazil is well known for it's grilled meats due to the proliferation of churrascurias around the world. Rodizios are found in most US citie where can gorge yourself on things like picanha (a cut known as "rump cover", seasoned with rock salt and grilled to perfection.) But we've also had plenty of fruits and vegetables. Some of the salads have included different lettuces as well as watercress (agriao) which is particular to Minas Gerais. The ever present pao de queijo have been very popular, especially at breakfast (cafe de manha).

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