Producer Profiles

CAC San Juan del Oro - Cooperativa Agraria Cafetalera

Cooperativa Agraria Cafetalera San Juan del Oro Ltda (CAC San Juan del Oro) is claimed to be the first coffee farmer cooperative in Peru, formed in 1961 to bypass local intermediaries who paid extremely low prices for their product. Farmers united to improve their living conditions, fight poverty and protect their environment. Their climate and altitude (between 1,000 and 1,900 meters) provides superior conditions for coffee to grow, among the best in the country. They are located about 320 km from Lake Titicaca and neighbor the Bahuaja Sonene natural reserve, in the Sandia Valley of Peru. Most members are migrants from the highlands and of Quechua and Aimara indigenous decent. They became Fair Trade Certified TM in 1997 and have since enjoyed the benefits coming from their direct access to international markets.
 

Programs

Classroom Furnishings and Scholarships

The cooperative purchased carpets and blackboards for classrooms with Fair Trade premiums. Also, each year the cooperative offers several scholarships for children to attend school, plus an additional course on organic agriculture.

Committee for the Development of Women (CODEMU)

Female cooperative members formed the Committee for the Development of Women (CODEMU) to develop programs promoting women empowerment and the understanding of gender issues. The creation of the committee sparked a sense of leadership and self-confidence amongst women.

Agricultural Practices Training

A workshop titled "Training in Cooperative Agricultural Practices" was held January 24-27, 2006 for all cooperative members. The workshop provided technical assistance on coffee cultivation and proper agricultural practices. More workshops have since then taken form.