Coffee is a popular drink in many parts of the world. Many of the coffee farms are that provide the beloved coffee beans are located around the equator in mountainous, rural areas. But there are some coffee farms located right next to major cities, like the one located just outside of Hong Kong.
Lai Chi Wo village is about 20 miles from central Hong Kong. In the 1950s, before the rise of coffee, many locals moved out of the village to find more jobs. Many went to the UK (Hong Kong was a British colony at the time), but in 2010 the local government wanted to revive the village of Lai Chi Wo and encouraged the residents to return to the village.
The coffee farms were some of the many projects the government added to revive the village. What started as 40 trees has grown to more than 700. The YouTube channel Goldthread, which makes weekly videos about Chinese culture and food, recently published a video that gives an inside look at a successful Lai Chi Wo coffee harvest.
Lai Chi Wo’s coffee farms are in the northern reaches of the so-called bean belt where coffee trees grow best. The bean belt stretches from about 25 degrees north of the equator and 30 degree south. This is where you’ll find famous coffee growing regions like the coffee farms in Panama’s Chiriquí Province and the regionally specific kapeng barako grown in the Philippines.
Lai Chi Wo’s first coffee harvest was last year, and the village is working hard to define what coffee from Hong Kong tastes like.