Smallholder farming has always been centered around family and community. There are many types of farmer groups, some centered around community where neighbors decide to farm together, share resources, and sometimes process their coffee together. Larger family groups with cousins, uncles, brothers and sisters may work together with their individual farms working as one business. THRIVE Farmers seeks out these farmer groups a core part of its mission to connect the smallholder farmer to a new market.
The Estrada family began farming coffee in Acatenango in the 1950’s. Nery Estrada married Ernesto Higueros, and as a result of their union, Finca La Union was founded in 1960. Nery and Ernesto had five sons César Otoniel, Nicodemo, Rudy Eliezar, Ernesto Nahamán, and Luis Ernesto. The family is now in the fourth generation of farming this land. The Higueros-Estrada family has built a complete coffee processing facility on the farm over last 50 years.
La Union symbolized the beginning of a family with the marriage of Nery and Ernesto, but today it symbolizes a place of service to the community where the neighboring smallholder farmers will now have a new market for their coffee in partnership with THRIVE Farmers. La Union serves more that 15 farmers in the community currently, and with this new relationship with THRIVE Farmers, their commitment is to provide access to this opportunity.
The Chiyuc Community is a group of small producers near the town of San Cristóbal, located in the Cobán region of Guatemala. Chiyuc is located on a slope where the altitude varies from 4600 to 4850 feet.
Producing coffee has been the main source of income in this region since the 1950´s. Joining the THRIVE System has given producers additional resources, including fungicides and fertilizers to fight the roya threat and increase the productivity and quality of their coffee trees.
They want the consumer to know that their honey-processed coffee will be a highly enjoyable experience for specialty coffee connoisseurs.