CAC La Florida - Cooperativa Agraria Cafetalera La Florida
Since 1966, the organization has grown to include 984 members at its peak. These benefits emphasize the socio-economic development of its members and the protection of the environment. Their education programs provide training for members, workshops on coffee production and management sessions for community youth. This includes access to new libraries, school gardens and uniforms. CAC La Florida believes their children are the future of the cooperative and must therefore provide support in educating strong leaders capable of management roles. In 2010, CAC La Florida began to develop social performance indicators on which to evaluate their existing programs and develop new ones tailored to the needs of members and the community.
CAC La Florida’s commitment to environmental protection has led the cooperative to educate farmers on how to protect the soil from erosion, retain moisture and restore its fertility. Members believe it is vital to support the ecosystem as it is home to many different species of insects, birds and animals. For over thirteen years, CAC La Florida has been committed to providing high quality, organic coffee to buyers and continues to strive for improvements in environmental protection, the quality of life of community members, and the quality of their product.
Fair Trade Certification has strengthened our organization and consolidated our governance which has taken many years of work. It has helped us acquire facilities that enable high levels of production without ever compromising quality. We’ve installed industrial drying stations, new outdoor paved surfaces for natural drying, and a wet processing plant. All of this helps guarantee the quality of our product. ”
Pablo Vargas Chávez, CAC La Florida
Small producers deserve the added value Fair Trade brings because of their hard work to meet certification standards and responsibilities. This value should be shared between the producer and consumer – on the producer end, because of their efforts –on the consumer end, because of the quality product. ”
Pablo Vargas Chávez, Manager
Thanks to our cooperative, we can overcome any challenge. We had the means to confront roya, and as such it did not greatly affect us. In the future, we want to focus on quality and not quantity. Next year we will have our own processing plant. Thanks to the Fair Trade premium, my children were able to study and did not get sick. If there is no buyer, there is no producer. We hope that US consumers continue to support us. Royal Coffee has visited us, not just in our offices, but has gone to members’ farms. That is something we value greatly, all of our buyers are welcome to visit. ”
Angel Quilca Rondan
LA FLORIDA distributed fertilizer to increase productivity for members, which ultimately leads to their increased productivity and economic well-being.
LA FLORIDA invested in the upkeep of various wet mill equipment within two processing centers.
LA FLORIDA invested premium dollars in various trainings for producers, including good agricultural practices, coffee fertilization, pest and disease prevention, and specialty coffee certifications. This investment also covered technical assistance for members, as well as the monitoring, standards compliances, and maintenance of organic and sustainable production norms of existing certifications.