Elevation: 500–900 metres (1,640–2,950 feet) above sea level
Rainfall: 1,400–1,700 millimetres (55–67 inches)
Temperature: 19–22°C (66–72°F)
The vast majority of Paraná’s coffee production comes from the northeastern region known as the ‘Pioneer North’. When the coffee industry in the state began to revive, producers in the region targeted the specialty market. Coffee in this region is mostly grown on small family-run farms of less than 50 hectares, and producing higher-value coffee allows farmers to increase revenue without increasing the planted area (AEAANP 2018).
This focus on high-quality production has paid off: Norte Pioneiro do Paraná was awarded an Indicação de Procedência (IP) in 2012, and coffee from the region typically fetches a price 30% above the national average. The area covered by the IP includes 6,000 producers (as of 2018), who mostly grow the typical Brazilian varieties Catuaí and Mundo Novo but are planting an increasing number of newer varieties adapted to the cool, wet conditions in the state, such as IPR 100 and Arara.
In the cool conditions, trees undergo several flowerings and the coffee matures slowly, so the coffee ripens unevenly and over a long period of time. Most of the harvest is complete by September, but some late-ripening varieties may be picked as late as December. Where coffee is mechanically harvested, this means that good sorting is essential to select ripe fruit. The wet climate makes drying the coffee challenging, so processing is mostly pulped natural or fully washed, to shorten the drying time as much as possible.