My friend and former colleague (at Intelligentsia), Steve Mierisch has been in contact lately about his family's farms' coffees in Honduras and Nicaragua.
Coming up on April 25th, they are holding an auction for these coffees. The Mierisches are working with the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, who own the Cup of Excellence auction system, the best known and most elite coffee auction program in the world. This is the first time that ACE has put on a private coffee auction program.
I've had many of Steve's family's coffees before, and they are excellent quality. What's really interesting here to me is seeing producers take it on themselves to make direct sales to their clients. In order to do this, you have to have high quality, you have to be extremely organized, and you have to have a ton of initiative. However, if things go well, I imagine that a successful auction will allow the family to continue investing in their own land and improving quality. That should be the model for as many producers as possible. This auction is exciting for that reason.
The Mierisches are not the first private producers to hold an internet auction, but it's still extremely rare and this bears watching, not least for the involvement of ACE.
Interested buyers can sign up for the auction here.