The first auction by Cup of Excellence (COE) in Peru set a stellar standard by crushing the all-time record for overall price per pound for the 19 lots auctioned, at US$21.13 per pound. The previous record of US$11.06 per pound was set at the Mexico 2017 auction on July 6. The top lot, Finca La Flor from Jaen, Cajamarca, with a score of 92.25, was sold to Times Club, Muruyama, Toa, Sarutahiko, and Tashiro of Japan, Campos of Australia, Coffee Libre of South Korea and Café Verde from Peru. Split into two lots for the auction, the coffee sold for US$100.10 and US$100.09 per pound. Other winning bidders in the auction hailed from Taiwan, Italy, the United States, New Zealand, Colombia and the United Kingdom. “It has been a great achievement and I hope that all the people who grow coffee will work hard to participate in this great international auction that really values our work as producers,” says Juan Heredia, Owner of the winning lot. In another first for coffee competitions, both Finca La Flor and the number 2 lot, El Cerro from San Ignacio, Cajamarca, are both certified organic. Peru is a leading cultivator of organic coffee and nine of the 19 lots featured were either organic, Fair Trade organic or Rainforest Alliance organic. The 19 coffees all scored 86 points or above in each cupping by the National Jury and the COE International Jury, after being cupped a minimum of five different times during the process. Peru has long been viewed for its ability to produce volume and/or certified coffees but the 2017 event resulted in five coffees winning Presidential awards, given to those scoring 90 and above. Susie Spindler, Co-Founder and senior adviser to the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, which runs the Cup of Excellence program, said, “For over 15 years, it has been my dream that eventually Cup Of Excellence could come to Peru and begin the process of discovering the qualities and the farmers that have long been hidden.” The high quality of the lots combined with the record overall price per pound paid speaks to Peru’s ability to compete at the highest level. “We have found the gems and now we know what Peru has to offer,” says Rony Gomez, Head Judge for the Peru event. COE held its Colombia Auction on November 7, with Brazil’s Pulped Natural and Natural Auction set for late November and Early December, concluding the 2017 season for the program.