Meet Our Farmers

IMG_7290

56 | El Mandarino

Arturo Martinez

Arturo has worked in the coffee industry for over 20 years. He travels through the different regions in Colombia picking coffee while simultaneously learning from many different farmers. A couple of years ago, while working in the Huila region, he noticed how popular the pink bourbon varietal was becoming. He decided it was time to grow his own trees. With seeds from a coffee plantation in Acevedo, Huila he travelled back to Nariño. Having no land of his own, he asked his father for a small lot to use and has his 250 coffee trees planted at El Mandarino. He now proudly puts his knowledge and experience to work cultivating his own coffee.

IMG_2604-e1597799590760

57 | Santa Ana

Brayan Meneses

At just 29 years of age, Brayan is part of the new generation of coffee growers. He is one of the youngest farmers we work with, but that does not mean he is lacking in knowledge. He learned everything he knows about coffee from his grandfather and has fond memories of going to help in the coffee fields after school. In addition to his hands-on coffee education, Brayan also completed school as a computer technician and wants to pursue a degree in agronomy. With this higher grade of education, he is able to look at the industry from a different perspective. He saw the need to shift from more traditional coffee harvesting to specialty coffee production about 4 years ago and is using his knowledge to improve quality on every level. Since then, he has participated in several competitions in the region over the last couple of years and has placed in the top 10 every time.

Albeiro-Solarte-20-e1597799090665

58 | Bellavista Natural

Albeiro Solarte

Albeiro and his nine siblings grew up at Finca Bellavista. He and four of his brothers still live at the farm today, caring for both the coffee and their aging parents. They have fond childhood memories and learned everything they know about coffee from their now 96 year old father. While Albeiro takes pride in growing excellent coffee, providing his parent’s with a comfortable lifestyle in their golden years is the ultimate reward for his hard work. He sees potential in our business model and hopes that this move towards sustainability will allow him to grow old at Finca Bellavista as well.

El Escondite | Anatulia Narvaez

59 | El Escondite

Anatulia Narvaez

Anatulia and her husband, Anselmo, raised their 5 children at El Escondite. They are thankful for the coffee industry they are part of because it allowed them to provide for the family while simultaneously teaching their children the value of hard work. Today, production at El Escondite has truly blossomed into a family business as the whole family now works at the farm. While many producers are experimenting with new varietals, Anatulia loves the traditional caturra variety. She is lucky that El Escondite is located 2,000 meters above sea level which allows her to successfully grow this variety with good yields.

El-Balso-27-scaled-e1617625255994

60 | El Balso

Walter Vargas

Located in Betulia, El Balso originally belonged to Walter's grandparents. Passed down through generations, it is now home to Walter, his wife, Gloria, their son, and Walter's mother. As a true family business, everyone helps out with the daily activities and maintenance. Of the 5,000 coffee trees planted, 2,000 are currently pruned and not producing coffee for this harvest. The other 3,000 consist  of Castillo Rosario and Tabi varietals which will account for roughly 8 bags of beans. With this smaller scale production, Walter believes he is better able to focus on both carefully selecting cherries and processing them. Budgeting for maintenance and upgrades is tough with narrow profit margins, but Walter recently replaced the plastic on one of his two marquesinas (drying bed). He would like to install pipes to transport the picked cherries from the field to the wet mill as well. We are hopeful that our financing opportunities and profit sharing business model will support his endeavors.

La-Falda-4-e1597797900669 square

61 | La Falda

Jorge Henao

A native of Urrao, Antioquia, Jorge was born into a coffee family. He grew up working alongside his father learning the intricacies of growing, harvesting, and processing coffee. Eventually, he started working by the day at neighboring farms as well, although his dream was to one day have his own farm. When a farm in the nearby town of Betulia came up for sale, Jorge knew it was the one for him. Unfortunately, he did not have the funds to purchase it. Luckly, one of his uncles offered to partner with him and let Jorge pay him back over time. They bought La Falda together and Jorge got to work implementing all the skills he developed over the years. Thirteen years later, La Falda is still home to Jorge, his wife Marisol, and their two children.

Page 8 of 12