Raw coffee cherries
In last months, our project has taken action aimed at strengthening the capabilities of the participants.
Thanks to your generous support, we have begun to implement the strategy of the coffee processing, seeking to increase the final value of the farmers product, which currently amounts only about 4%; the rest is taken by buyers, roasters and final sellers. The price of a quintal of coffee (36 kg roasted) in the region is $1,500.00 pesos, while the selling price to the public of each kilo of coffee is nearly five times higher ($180.00 per kilogram) and 60 times greater when sold as a cup of coffee in a cafeteria. However, in the coffee-growing regions the majority of producers sell their product without added value. For this reason, one of the main objectives of the project is to provide producers of capabilities to transform their product and thus advance in the appropriation of added value.
During the past few months we have initiated a series of training courses. The first workshop was held with the participation of about 50 producers and was conducted by Mr. Clemente Santiago Paz, an expert coffee producer, who carried out extensive training from the harvest to the process called beneficio húmedo (wet mill processing), in which treatment is given to harvested coffee beans, retaining qualities that guarantee an excellent cup of coffee..
A second course was held with the accompaniment of Mr Joel Cadena, member of the Regional Council of the coffee, who trained some of the participants in the wet and dry milling with zaranda (sieve) techniques. This drying technique, decreases production costs because no fossil fuel is used during the process and brings important qualities to the harvested grain.
Another strategy we have consolidateded during this time is the meliponiculture. This effort has meant a process of learning with tripping but also with achievements. For this process we are advised by the Organization Inana A.C, who provide constant advice to participating colleagues and observe the evolution of 25 nests of wild bees in the two communities where we work. We have made observations of nests to verify its development and noted that most have adapted well to the new environment. However, we have lost 3 nests, same which were received in poor condition so that they did not survive the winter. On the other hand, most of the living nests have increased in more than half its weight and the first harvest of some of them will be in the following months.
Finally, participants who have vermicompost production modules, have recently been advised by the engineer Eligio Ruiz, who has attended the two communities to check the condition of these vermicompost modules. Mr Ruiz has given recommendations on the needs that have weaker modules and remembered the care that participants must provide to be able to reap the benefits of earthworms breeding. On the other hand, coffee producers expressed his approval by the use of the leachate of vermicompost applied to the coffee farms, where the strengthening of plants, the less rust infestation and overall improvement in production is notorious, thanks to the nutrients included in this solution.
We thank all our donors for the confidence to support these actions to benefit coffee-producing families and invite you to visit us and send us your comments, criticisms or suggestions.
Zaranda drying technique
Virgin honey ready to be harvested
Observing coffee quality
Checking Vermicompost condition
Opened Bee hive