This week I was able to travel with another TechnoServe consultant to Moyobamba, a small town two hours away from Tarapoto where much of the coffee in the San Martin region is grown. It was also my first opportunity to visit coffee farms and speak to producers, and definitely one of the highlights of this experience thus far. As most specialty coffees are grown at 1,200 meters and above, getting there proved to be the biggest challenge. Given that motorcycles are by far the most common form of transportation here, the roads going up to the farms are not meant for trucks. In fact, there were a number of sticky situations where we would all have to get out of the truck and help direct the driver across some questionable “bridges.” It was well worth the adventure though as these visits not only brought our project to life, but also gave me a profound sense of perspective given the difficult circumstances these people endure for a product that I enjoy each day and often don’t think twice about. I look forward to continuing this journey through my travels to Jaen and San Ignacio next week.

The Volunteer

Marissa Garcia

Associate, CF – Institutional, Latin America New York, New York

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