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The Costa Rican Coffee Institute, ICAFE, is a non-governmental public entity that promotes the coffee industry in the areas of agronomy, promotion, research and the transfer of technology, and regulates the marketing of coffee.  This entity was created in 1933 by the enactment of the law regarding the Regulation of Relations between Coffee Producers, Processors and Exporters, No 2762 of 1961.


ICAFE Functions:


The institution provides fair regulation regarding relations between the different sectors of the coffee industry. It contributes to the development of the coffee enterprise and the agricultural diversity of the country; it supports all plant milling facilities, exportation and marketing of coffee; it promotes Costa Rican coffee in and out of the country; it researches and develops agricultural and industrial technology and it approves the final minimum sales price that each coffee miller must pay to the producer.


ICAFE Services:


The institute offers individual and group technical assistance; it takes soil, plant, and water samples for official reports; it distributes parasitoids, entomologically pathogenic fungi and Coffee Berry Borer traps; it selects authorized seeds; advises regarding ISO rules; checks for sustainable coffee and carries out coffee quality and Ocratoxins analysis.




The Center for Coffee Research (CICAFE), created in May, 1997, by ICAFE, develops and shares technology in various areas of the coffee growing enterprise.


Over an area of 10 hectares (24.71 acres), CICAFE undertakes research on the cultivation of coffee, through field studies on improving genetics. It has a Chemical Laboratory, quality control, and a history of research that builds on more than 50 years of scientific work on coffee in Costa Rica.


Located in the Heredian province, the land has ideal characteristics for experiments: 1,200 meters high (3,937 feet), average annual temperature of 22.7°C (72.9°F) and an annual average humidity of 78%.


Besides these elements, the zone is identified by its Andisol soil type, derived from volcanic ashes, with the other half made up of organic material and excellent texture. On the other three hectares (7.4 acres), CICAFE has buildings that serve as the branch of the Costa Rican Coffee Institute for Technological Management.