The Ultimate Coffee Glossary


What is a Micro-Lot?

In the coffee industry, a Micro-Lot refers to a small volume of coffee produced separately with unique characteristics. It is typically harvested from a specific cultivar, plot of land, or altitude band and processed in a separate way to achieve its distinct flavour profile. The term also implies an experimental or investigative approach from the grower and buyer, working in collaboration to select the best quality beans through cupping and qualitative selection.
A true Micro-Lot involves a dedicated effort to separate and carefully prepare a lot of coffee that will have special characteristics. However, the term is often misused and abused in the industry for marketing purposes, leading to confusion and misrepresentation of the true value of the product. It is important to understand that simply dividing up a large lot of coffee into smaller portions and selling it as Micro-Lot does not meet the standard. Overall, the term Micro-Lot should indicate a high level of quality and a special effort to produce something unique and exceptional.

Why is Micro-Lot coffee more expensive?

Micro-Lot coffee is generally more expensive than regular coffee due to several factors. Firstly, Micro-Lot coffee is produced in small quantities, often from a specific plot of land, which means that the yield is limited, and the production costs are higher. This means that farmers and producers must charge a premium price to cover their expenses and make a profit.
Additionally, Micro-Lot coffee is often of a higher quality and has unique characteristics that set it apart from other coffees. The extra care and attention given to growing and processing Micro-Lot coffee can result in a more complex and nuanced flavor profile, which is highly valued by coffee connoisseurs. As a result, the demand for Micro-Lot coffee is often higher, which also drives up the price.
Finally, the process of sourcing and purchasing Micro-Lot coffee can also contribute to its higher price point. Because Micro-Lot coffee is produced in limited quantities, it is often sold directly to specialty coffee roasters or importers rather than through commodity markets. This can make it more challenging to source, which can add to the cost.
Overall, the combination of limited supply, higher production costs, unique flavor profile, and limited availability contribute to the higher price of Micro-Lot coffee.
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