MAF flies tonnes and tonnes of coffee every year so that communities and coffee connoisseurs alike can benefit. Without the plane getting the coffee beans from the communities where it is produced to the market would be virtually impossible
In the Highlands of Papua New Guinea, coffee is one of the main sources of income for remote communities, but only if they can get the harvest of fresh coffee beans to buyers in a city.
For many communities like Dusin, MAF provides the only option: flying. The small community of Dusin is on a hill surrounded by mountains.
Last year Pilots Captain Michael Duncalfe and First Officer-in-training Judith Dupuis flew six passengers and a load of food cargo to Dustin.
One of the most important features of the Twin Otter is the ability to carry heavy loads, which allows for a wide variety of support to remote communities.
The community was ready with a stack of 26 weighed and marked coffee bags. Village men worked quickly to unload the plane and load up the 40 to 50 kilo bags of coffee while a crowd watched from behind a wood and wire fence.
It’s a routine flight for MAF, yet vitally important to the community.
These cargo flights are not without frustrations: unloading and loading 1.5 tonnes of cargo in uncomfortable weather with a pulled back-muscle and people crowding around the plane; villagers at remote airstrips trying to over-load the cargo lockers on return flights without weighing; turn-around times that take twice as long as they should on already busy days.
But at the end of the day, Michael knows the value of these flights to the communities MAF serves.
Back at the MAF base in Goroka the coffee is unloaded by MAF’s very own Muscle men
Coffee from the highlands, flown in by MAF, sits in the MAF hanger at Goroka waiting for the buyer. MAF supports remote communities through the transport of products such as coffee to where it can be sold.
After all that hard work it may be time for another cup of coffee!