What's included

The intention of this catalog is that those working with coffee should be able to make informed decisions about which variety will work best for their situation and needs.

What’s includ­ed

This cat­a­log cov­ers vari­eties from the two species of cof­fee plants that are in wide cul­ti­va­tion glob­al­ly—C. ara­bi­ca (known as Ara­bi­ca), and C. canepho­ra (known as Robusta).


Ara­bi­ca is the dom­i­nant species in Cen­tral and South Amer­i­ca and much of east Africa, and is con­sid­ered to pro­duce the high­est cup qual­i­ty. The Ara­bi­ca species is made up of many vari­eties or cul­ti­vars — dis­tinct types that are able to sex­u­al­ly repro­duce with one another.


Robus­ta is the sec­ond-most com­mon­ly grown cof­fee species; its com­mer­cial impor­tance has grown steadi­ly over the last cen­tu­ry and it now accounts for approx­i­mate­ly 40% of glob­al pro­duc­tion. The genet­ic diver­si­ty of robus­ta cof­fee is much larg­er than that of ara­bi­ca, and it is only just begin­ning to be explored by breed­ers and the indus­try alike.

Vari­eties scope

The vari­eties in this cat­a­log have been select­ed for inclu­sion because of their eco­nom­ic, his­tor­i­cal, cul­tur­al, or genet­ic impor­tance to the glob­al cul­ti­va­tion of cof­fee. World Cof­fee Research con­sult­ed wide­ly with nation­al cof­fee insti­tu­tions, breed­ers, researchers, and cof­fee com­pa­nies from across the world to make these selections.

Because the cat­a­log is meant to be a prac­ti­cal tool and guide for cof­fee pro­duc­ers, it does not aim to rep­re­sent an exhaus­tive list of all cof­fee vari­eties in exis­tence. The vari­eties includ­ed here have been select­ed or devel­oped by farm­ers and breed­ers pri­mar­i­ly over the last cen­tu­ry, although the domes­ti­ca­tion of cof­fee began at least 500 years ago.

Def­i­n­i­tion of a variety

To be con­sid­ered for inclu­sion in this cat­a­log, vari­eties must meet the fol­low­ing stan­dards (based on the def­i­n­i­tion of a vari­ety as giv­en by the Inter­na­tion­al Union for the Pro­tec­tion of New Vari­eties of Plants (UPOV):

  • The vari­ety is dis­tinct. It is dis­tin­guish­able from oth­er vari­eties based on the above set of characteristics.
  • The vari­ety is uni­form. It can be pre­cise­ly described by a set of char­ac­ter­is­tics and all the plants of this type look the same.
  • The vari­ety is sta­ble. The vari­ety can be repro­duced in such a man­ner that its char­ac­ter­is­tics are unchanged in the next generation.

Note: There is some excep­tion to the above rule of thumb. Some cof­fees includ­ed in this cat­a­log — T5175, T5296, Anacafe 14, and Paca­ma­ra — do not meet the above def­i­n­i­tion because they are nei­ther uni­form nor sta­ble from one gen­er­a­tion to the next. They are includ­ed here because they are com­mon­ly known to farm­ers and grown wide­ly in their respec­tive regions, but it’s impor­tant to know they lack uni­for­mi­ty and sta­bil­i­ty and there­fore do not meet the def­i­n­i­tion of vari­ety laid out here.

Geo­graph­i­cal scope


The cur­rent ver­sion of the ara­bi­ca cat­a­log cov­ers the most impor­tant cof­fee vari­eties in the 15 coun­tries list­ed below. Many vari­eties in this cat­a­log are also found in coun­tries not list­ed below.

  • Cos­ta Rica
  • El Sal­vador
  • Guatemala
  • Hon­duras
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Nicaragua
  • Pana­ma
  • Perú
  • Repúbli­ca Dominicana
  • Rwan­da
  • Ugan­da
  • Zam­bia
  • Zim­bab­we


The cur­rent ver­sion of the cat­a­log cov­ers impor­tant robus­ta vari­eties in the 8 coun­tries list­ed below.

  • Brazil
  • Mex­i­co
  • Ugan­da
  • Indone­sia
  • Viet­nam
  • India
  • Thai­land
  • Philip­pines

World Coffee Research

World Coffee Research is a 501 (c)(5) non-profit, collaborative research and development program of the global coffee industry to grow, protect, and enhance supplies of quality coffee while improving the livelihoods of the families who produce it.

Are you a coffee farmer?

We've created a printable version of our coffee variety catalog specifically for farmers. Available in English and Spanish.