Mascarocoffea from Madagascar is well known to be a caffeine-free coffee made from multiple species of the Coffea genus, the three most important being: C. homollei, C. kianjavatensis, and C. lancifolia. It is also known as kafeala in the South East Region and hazofotsy, skarife or taolanosy in other regions. This type of coffee tree is rustic, resistant to pests and well adapted to the great variety of climates and soils found in Madagascar. C. lancifolia has big green leaves and yellowish fruits are yellowish, C. kianjavatensis has medium, copper red young leaves and yellow fruits, and C. homollei has medium olive green leaves and pale green fruits. These trees flower between September and November and fruits are ready to harvest after 90-130 days. Mascarocoffea is mainly found in the areas of Vohibe, in southeastern Madagascar; Fort Dauphin in the Anosy region; and in Bealanana in the Sofia region. It is estimated that 30-35 tons are harvested annually. Mascarocoffea is rarely sold commercially. The majority of the coffee harvested is used for home consumption, and the local communities also use it to make fruit pastes and other processed products for personal consumption. This wild coffee is occasionally consumed mixed with Arabica coffee for an improved taste. Today, this coffee is at risk of extinction due to deforestation and human activities on the island, which have given rise to a fragmentation of the forest and a modification of the ecosystems. The lack of funding to encourage the continuation of the culture of mascarocoffea might limit future production of this product. As native species of Madagascar, mascarocoffea is an important element of local biodiversity that must be preserved.
The traditional products, local breeds, and know-how collected by the Ark of Taste belong to the communities that have preserved them over time. They have been shared and described here thanks to the efforts of the network that that Slow Food has developed around the world, with the objective of preserving them and raising awareness. The text from these descriptions may be used, without modifications and citing the source, for non-commercial purposes in line with the Slow Food philosophy.