Yemen Coffee - DNA Mapping in Order to Create a Market Segment for   Premium Third Wave Coffee Marketing - Background Paper 

“If Yemen had proprietary terms that are widely recognized—as Mocha once was—then it could have enormous value in the marketplace. In order to achieve this, the issue of varietals, their characterization, and their taxonomy must first be addressed. More than most countries, Yemen lends itself to differentiation based on unique flavors and corresponding agro-ecological zones.”  USAID Yemen Coffee Assessment 


"Hybrids vs Heirlooms – Kevin Knox in “Coffee Basics”, states that ---“As is the case with many domesticated agricultural products today, the issue of growing heirloom varieties versus modern varieties is a great concern to the specialty coffee industry. Older versions of the arabica plant are preferred by many specialty coffee buyers for their superior and distinctive taste qualities. Specialty coffee buyers concerned about flavor and the future existence of fine coffee encourage growers to continue cultivating heirloom plants. They are also willing to pay the higher price that support growers in doing so.”


The link above is to a recent study by Luis Fernando Samper on the Coffee Marketing Intangibles.  This multi-billion dollar market offers unique opportunities for Yemen's coffee sector. 


The following is a program description of a coffee marketing initiative in Yemen.  

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Yemen - Origin of Commercial Coffee

Cultivation of Coffea arabica started in Yemen as early as the 6th century. Original genetic material came from Ethiopia where the greatest diversity is found. In terms of modern specialty coffee, the entire genetic base is built on two genotypes from Yemen: (1) Typica; and (2) Bourbon. The specialty coffee industry highly values the taste and cup characteristics of “heirloom” varieties of Coffea arabica. Source:”Coffee Species and Varietal Identification,” Tools for Identifying Biodiversit