Last week meshed with the prior as we worked through the weekend and headed up north on Sunday. I was able to spend half of Monday with Denis, finalizing
the costs for his nursery.
Denis will be producing 40,000 certified plants next year (!). So, what are the costs involved, you ask?
Including both fixed and variable costs, Denis will have the largest financial burden in his first year – approximately $13,000 USD. He has to sell
approximately 92,000 plants to break even, which will be achievable in his third year. IPSA will charge $742 to certify the nursery itself, and then an
additional two cents per certified plant (costing Denis $1,542 in certifications alone).
Nurseries are widely used (and successful) in other countries, however, there are currently zero certified nurseries in Nicaragua and about 95% of small
farmers produce their plants on their farms. The certified nurseries will guarantee specific varieties of coffees, as well their productivity – which is
why the certified plants will cost six cordobas (20 cents), almost double the uncertified cost. As you can see, it is imperative that Denis markets his
nursery well, as he will need to not only find buyers, but also change the cultural mindset of these farmers. I have faith! Denis is extremely sharp and
Side note: Denis will be taking out a small loan for the initial investment. And the interest he will be paying? 18% - which is on the lower side for small
September 15th is Nicaragua’s Independence Day, so both Wednesday and Thursday were national holidays. For weeks leading up to it, streets have
been lined with decorations and in the smaller towns you can hear the marching bands practicing until late at night.
We persuaded Ryan to take us to Masaya
Volcano, which is only about 25 minutes outside of Managua. The volcano only became active in January however Nicaragua is known for its active and
inactive volcanoes (and earthquakes, as we felt one the night prior) which actually make the soil quite nutrient rich, and of course, ideal for growing