This past week we travelled to two new regions in the north where coffee is cultivated – Esteli and Nueva Segovia in order to continue our meetings with the exporters and producers. These regions are better recognized for the high quality of their coffee than Matagalpa and Jinotega (which we visited last week). This is a result of favorable ecological conditions, more efficient agricultural practices and shorter transportation time between wet and dry processing.

At this stage we have a good understanding for how coffee is produced and what processes are the most important for its quality. What we are still looking to understand in detail is how the premium for the specialty coffee is determined and distributed down the value chain.

While we talked to the producers in the municipality of Dipilto, home to the most Cup of Excellence winners, we also got a chance to taste their delicious coffee. I have definitely increased my coffee consumption to three or four cups a day but I will treat this as a part of the experience!

 

 

On Thursday we began our two-day workshop with the producers for the certification project and started developing a business model of their nurseries. We focused on analyzing the current tendencies in the market and created a value proposition based on the profile of potential clients and the products which we will offer to meet their needs. I will be working directly with Ever and Moises who are small-scale farmers and our first challenge will be gathering the necessary data. It is very common for the farmers in Nicaragua to not know or track their basic costs and this will be their first homework assignment. I am looking forward to the outcome of our work together and how much impact it will bring.

We finished this productive week with a short trip to the beautiful Corn Islands in the Caribbean Sea. People of the islands celebrated the 175 th anniversary of the freedom from slavery and everyone was in a festive mood. I also got to make some new friends with the cute kids hanging around our hotel!

The Volunteer

Marzena Loos

Senior Associate, Shareholder Services & Funds Administration

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