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Juan Valdez Organic Coffee at Wal-Mart
Last week we wrote about Juan Valdez and organic coffee. We did not find a reference to organic coffee on the Juan Valdez web site, either in Spanish or English. However, it turns out that there is Juan Valdez organic coffee at Wal-Mart. On the Wal-Mart web site the coffee is described as having a pronounced aroma, medium to low acidity, and lots of body. According to Wal-Mart the Juan Valdez organic coffee at Wal-Mart has been “Cultivated and Produced With Organic Practices, Without Incidence of Chemical Products” and “Has Been Certified Under International Norms That Guarantees The Consumption of A High Quality Coffee Friendly With The Environment.” The coffee is also a product of Colombia.
So, you can get Juan Valdez organic coffee at Wal-Mart. But what is Juan Valdez coffee? In 1959 the National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia created a fictional character, Juan Valdez, as an icon for 100% Colombian coffee. The point of the exercise was to distinguish 100% Colombian coffee from coffee from other countries or coffee that was mixed with beans from other locations. Juan has typically been portrayed with his mule, Conchita, carrying sacks of coffee beans to be processed. More recently a coffee shop business took the name of Juan Valdez. Juan Valdez coffee shops can be found throughout Colombia and in other parts of the world.
The brand only sells coffee grown in the Colombian coffee growing region, the cafetero, which includes the departments of Caldas, Risaralda, Quindío, and Valle del Cauca where half a million people work in the coffee industry. This region produces healthy organic coffee as well a coffee grown by the more usual means.
Although you can buy the brand, Juan Valdez organic coffee at Wal-Mart the name Juan Valdez simply tells you that it is certified as Colombian coffee. However, the coffee is also certified as organic so that it contains the organic coffee antioxidants that make drinking organic coffee a healthy exercise. Although Wal-Mart sells a bag of coffee labeled Juan Valdez it does not have a corner on the market for Colombian coffee or organic coffee. Colombian coffees are all able to carry the Juan Valdez icon if they are 100% Colombian and can also be certified organic if they are grown under sustainable growing conditions and free from the use of herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, and synthetic fertilizers.
These coffees have the same beneficial health effects as other organic coffees grown throughout the world. Organic coffees from Colombia are free of the contaminants found in many types of regular coffee. Organic coffee from Colombia has the same antioxidants that help reduce the incidence of type II diabetes, prostate cancer, and colon cancer. Colombian organic coffee calms the heart as well, that is to say it reduces the incidence of hospitalization for heart rhythm disturbances as medical research has shown.