In the News from Panama

Panama Coffee Sets New Record

Coffee from a Panama farm has set a new world record for the highest price ever paid for coffee, beating the price paid for a Panama variety two years ago.

A buyer in Dubai paid $10,000 per kilogram for the coffee called Gesha (Geisha) from Panama farm Ninety Plus, beating the old record of $5,001.50 per kilogram paid for beans from the same farm in 2017, according to a press release. The coffee was developed as an experimental prototype by Ninety Plus and purchased by Emirati entrepreneur Ibrahim Al Mallouhi, founder of The Espresso Lab.

The Espresso lab expects to sell the coffee for $250 a cup, the company says.

So what makes the Ninety Plus’ prototype coffees so special? The prototypes “involve highly controlled cultivation and use of local yeast strains during multi-stage fermentations,” the release explains. Founder Joseph Brodsky first started in Ethiopia before moving to “a more controlled environment in Volcan, Chiriqui, a province in Panama, site of the last eruptions of the Baru volcano,” where he began to work with the heirloom Ethiopia Gesha variety.

These coffee prototypes “hold the key to real products of the future and represent an entirely new taste frontier,” according to Al Mallouhi.

Ninety Plus coffees have won five World Brewers Cup championships and have “garnered more 97-point reviews than any other coffee farm in the world,” according to the statement. They also promote sustainable farming and innovated with its reforestation model, “producing coffee under full canopy, with native Ngäbes (indigenous people, who live in western Panama) earning top wages and also being part of the innovation cycle,” the statement says.

“The farm feels like a wildlife park with coffee and people integrated into the ecosystem,” according to Brodsky.

Ninety-Plus has also helped promote a new level of coffee tourism. Coffee farms are working with the Panama Tourism Authority to create a “coffee circuit,” offering tours and tastings, much like wine country tours.

For more about Ninety Plus and crazily expensive coffee, you can check out their web site,