Pacas is a natural mutation of Bourbon, similar to Caturra in Brazil and Villa Sarchi in Costa Rica. Similar to other widely cultivated Bourbon mutants, Pacas has a single-gene mutation that causes the plant to grow smaller (dwarfism). This is it’s chief virtue: the plant’s small size leads to higher potential yields and the possibility of placing plants closer together to increase total fruit production on a farm.
The variety was discovered in 1949 on a farm owned by the Pacas family in the Santa Ana region of El Salvador. In 1960, the Salvadoran Institute for Coffee Research (ISIC) began a program of pedigree selection (selection of individual plants through successive generations) for Pacas. It is still widely grown in the country; it accounts for about 25% of the country's coffee production. Seed stock is available from Procafe. It is also grown in Honduras, where it was introduced by IHCAFE in 1974.