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Producer Profiles

FCC - Federación Campesina del Cauca

FCC members, prior to organizing, produced very low quality coffee beans, which were previously used mostly in instant coffee. Coffee was sold for very low prices and provided little income for the producers. Becoming Fair Trade Certified has impacted the producers greatly by offering them access to markets in the United States and Europe. Working together, the group has strengthened the vision of the cooperative, focusing on its social and environmental values. The Fair Trade model has generated increased self-esteem because the cooperative members have direct contact with their clients. There has been a shift in attitude of the producers as a result. They now are very focused on quality and consistency, and are proud to see their products in specialty markets.
 

Quotable

“Fair Trade has been the greatest catalyst for change, both qualitative and quantitative, in the past decade of FCC’s existence. Fair Trade has enormously strengthened the cooperative as both a business and a social enterprise, which today allows us to be self-sustaining in the provision of social, economic, agronomic, and environmental tools and inputs to our members.”  

Derly Serna, ADMINISTRATION

Programs

Productivity & Quality

FCC conducted farm visits to foment the exchange of knowledge and expertise between technicians and producers and their families. Technicians support members in maintaining certifications such as Fair Trade and Organic by conducting classroom training sessions as well as on-farm demonstrations on ecological and agricultural issues. FCC is also able to distribute organic solid and liquid fertilizers produced at their own fertilizer plant.

Producer Organizations

FCC invested in infrastructure that allows their members to sell their coffee at nearby, collection locations. FCC also invests in organization capacity-building, which allows Fair Trade and its associated processes, such as the democratic participation in social premium spending, to be possible.