“Don’t like the weather? Just wait a minute.” That old joke is unfortunately becoming truer and truer for our partners in the coffeelands, whose once-predictable harvest seasons have been changing year by year as global temperatures increase and other weather patterns alter the usual timeline for coffee growing.
Generally speaking, however, the world of coffee agriculture still operates in two “semesters,” and we are roughly able to assume when we will start to see coffees being harvested, processing, and shipped around the world. The schedule provided before is an estimate, and in some cases (such as with Colombia, Kenya, and Sumatra), it is somewhat broad, not accounting for some specific in-country differences or regional variances that cause diversions from the stated “norm.”
Following harvest and processing, coffee will typically “rest” at origin for 30–60 days before shipping out of its country of origin—though your mileage may vary. The old logistics joke, “It takes about 6 weeks to get from anywhere to anywhere,” is pretty true shipping from coffee producing countries, but there are countless variables involved in the transport, and nothing in coffee is hard and fast.