Tay Bac: Coffee Analysis


Nestled in Vietnam’s Northwest, Tay Bac emerges as a hidden gem for Arabica coffee. Despite the region’s complex terrain, Dien Bien and Son La provinces showcase remarkable Arabica cultivation. Dien Bien, with its unique latitude, defies altitude norms, fostering high-quality Arabica. Son La, akin to Brazil’s Sao Paulo, mirrors equatorial symmetry, creating an ideal environment. Noteworthy is Chieu Ban commune’s success story, emphasizing quality over quantity. While sporadic areas exist south of Hai Van Pass, Tay Bac stands out as a promising hub for high-quality Arabica coffee in Vietnam.

Exploring Tay Bac Coffee

Unveiling Vietnam’s Northwest Arabica Region


Introduction – Unlocking the Mysteries of Tay Bac Coffee

Nestled in the Northwest region of Vietnam lies a hidden gem for coffee enthusiasts – Tay Bac. Amidst the complex terrain and diverse climates, this area, often overlooked in the Vietnamese coffee industry, harbors the potential for cultivating exceptional Arabica coffee. Join us as we delve into the nuances of Dien Bien and Son La provinces, unearthing the distinctive qualities that make Tay Bac coffee a standout in the world of specialty coffee.


Dien Bien Arabica 

A Tale of Resilience and Quality

Dien Bien, despite its lower altitude (400-500m), defies the odds to produce remarkable Arabica coffee. The region experiences two distinct seasons, characterized by cold, dry winters and hot, rainy summers. In the Muong Ang area, where coffee cultivation has thrived for over a decade, the unique latitude near the northern tropics contributes to the high-quality coffee produced. The story of Dien Bien Arabica dates back to 1961 when experts recognized the region’s potential for Arabica coffee development.


Son La Arabica

Symmetry with Sao Paulo, Brazil

Son La, reminiscent of Sao Paulo in Brazil, boasts Arabica coffee cultivation on the slopes of foothills with an altitude of around 600m. Despite not reaching the ideal height, Son La’s coffee areas, positioned symmetrically equatorial with Sao Paulo, create an environment conducive to exceptional Arabica beans. Renowned coffee expert René Coste emphasizes the significance of the combination of sea-level elevation and altitude, which serves as an antidote to adverse factors. Son La Arabica, between 21 and 22 north latitudes, positions itself uniquely in the global coffee landscape.


Chieu Ban

Coffee Rising –  A Beacon of Progress

In Mai Son district, Chieu Ban commune emerges as a success story for Arabica cultivation. The mountainous community, with 1,200 hectares dedicated to coffee among its 1,564 hectares of arable land, has experienced a significant improvement in livelihoods. The success of Chieu Ban coffee reflects a strategic focus on quality improvement rather than expanding cultivation areas. Coffee has become the lifeblood of this community, paving the way for Chieu Ban coffee to become an internationally recognized brand.


Beyond Dien Bien and Son La

Exploring Northern Coffee Frontiers

While Dien Bien and Son La take the spotlight, several other areas in the north exhibit conditions suitable for Arabica coffee cultivation. South of Hai Van Pass and some provinces on the south-central coast, including Binh Dinh, Phu Yen, and Khanh Hoa, showcase sporadic Arabica coffee-growing regions. However, the significant potential lies in Tay Bac’s Northwest, where the conditions align perfectly for the cultivation of high-quality Arabica beans.



Tay Bac’s Potential Unveiled

As we conclude our exploration of Tay Bac coffee, it’s evident that this Northwest region holds immense promise for the future of Arabica cultivation in Vietnam. With Dien Bien and Son La leading the way, the journey south will reveal more nuances in the Central and Central Highlands Arabica coffee regions. Stay tuned for the next installment in our series uncovering traditional Arabica coffee regions in Vietnam.

GAEA, Vietnam Sourcing & Manufacturing

Established in 2019, GAEA Vietnam Sourcing, a manufacturer and supplier, is your green coffee bean sourcing and export partner in Vietnam. We undoubtedly have the widest available assortment and are best updated on stock, prices, and the latest crops. We also manufacture and roast coffee under private or no label for brands across the hospitality, foodservice, and retail sectors, reflecting our B2B manufacturing. Our product range includes roasted whole beans and ground coffees. Read more information here: LINK.

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