Curing & Packaging Yerba Maté

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There are 2 major techniques of curing yerba maté in the world.

The first and most commonly commercially processed method is fire dried:

  1. The fire is started with assorted wood material.
  2. Then the fire is lit and allowed to burn down to a coal level.
  3. After the fire has been set. A lien-to is placed over the fire with the yerba maté leaves at about 2 meter.
  4. After about 8 hours the yerba maté leaves are dried and crushed up.
  5. The taste of the leaves have a smoky flavor when consumed.

The smaller more boutique method of curing yerba maté is the tumble dried method:

  1. First the leaves are harvested and then placed onto large screens in covered areas.
  2. The leaves are "tumbled" as hot dry air is pushed up from the bottom.
  3. After 3 days the leaves are crushed and packaged into 20 kilo bags. (44lbs.)

Following the curing process of the yerba maté, the leaves are crushed and dried. At which the leaves are packaged into 20 kilo (44lb.) bags for storage in excess of 4 to 6 months in a clean dry location. Preferably shaded from the sun as well and at about 70 degrees. Many farms use a root cellar of sorts to achieve this goal.

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