Pictured above: Roya, or coffee leaf rust, on the leaf of a coffee plant in Guatemala.
During a trip to origin this past February, we witnessed the devastating Roya disease affecting the coffee crops in Central America, including Guatemala. Roya, or coffee leaf rust, is a parasitic fungus that deprives the coffee plant of nutrients which results in the plant losing its' leaves. Without foliage the plant is unable to breathe, ceasing to produce fruit and eventually dies. 1