UCPCO - Unión de Cooperativas Productores de Café Orgánico
They are located in the San Juan del Río Coco region of Northern-Central Nicaragua, approximately six hours from the capital. In the fertile mountains of the Río Coco region, UCPCO farmers are growing high-quality coffee and earning Fair Trade and Organic price premiums for their efforts.
“Fair Trade isn’t only fair in the prices for coffee but also in the quality of life of cooperative members; everyday my family’s life is greatly improving. Now I have security, comfort and privacy. This is the quality of life that we deserve as family coffee farmers that we can now have by selling out product for a fair price.” ”
Ramón Isidro Medina Acuña
The price we receive from Fair Trade coffee has changed my life but more importantly my children’s opportunities. Now, the organic training and capacity-building investments afforded by the increased price has prepared this family of farmers for the future. ”
Teresa Muñoz, UCPCO Member
Improving Producers lifes
UCPCO has utilized the money from their premium to improve the livelihoods of their members. This program has brought the community together in down times and allowed them to continue prospering through the extra Fair Trade effort.
UCPCO used premium money to award scholarships to members' children. Students got scholarships for elementary school, high school, technical school, and college. In a community where many small farmers don't have enough money to send their children to school, this is a huge contribution to their families.
UCPCO Members Construct Better Homes
UCPCO members have been able to invest Fair Trade premiums to rebuild homes, providing safe living conditions for themselves and their families. Members like Corina Ramírez used to live in a house with wooden walls, a dirt floor, and a tarp roof. Since it’s reconstruction she now has brick walls, a concrete floor, and a tin roof.