The people of PNG are culturally diverse, with more than 800 languages, and most highland tribes had no exposure to western influence until the early 1900’s. In 1920, commercial coffee growing began after coffee seeds—a Typica varietal named Jamaica Blue Mountain—were imported from Jamaica. Also, the Arusha varietal, present in this Bebe coffee, is grown exclusively in PNG.
At first, most coffee in PNG was grown on 18 large plantations. However, these days 85% of coffee in PNG is grown in “coffee gardens,” as smallholders call them. These farmers live off what they grow on their farms, and tend coffee as a side crop. Their coffee gardens contain anywhere from a couple of coffee trees to a couple hundred. The Coffee Industry Corporation of PNG acknowledges that a significant quantity of smallholder coffee is of… “superior quality, with exceptional cupping characteristics,” and sought out by many overseas buyers.