Coffee Stories: Fair Trade Organic Nicaragua
Have you ever tasted our Fair Trade Organic Nicaraguan coffee from San Juan del Rio Coco? It is a medium body coffee with a hint of almond, herbal and strawberry. A true treat for the tastebuds! We encourage all coffee lovers to try our collection of fresh and meticulously roasted coffees. We also encourage you to take it one step further and get to know the story behind your bag of beans. Each kind of coffee comes directly from a specific farm somewhere in the world. That farm is owned and operated by a farmer, who most likely has children, and who lives in a community of people just like you and I do. We want to give you the opportunity to get to know the real stories and the real people behind your coffee.
Sometimes in America we take our standard of living for granted. The basic necessities, like having a roof over our head and being able to send our children to school is a great privilege. In the United States, coffee is a billion dollar industry. Yes, that’s billion with a B. Unfortunately though, much of our coffee is produced in irresponsible ways which harm the lives of families and farmers globally. We at La Terza make it our mission to find farmers and organizations that are doing good things for their workers, and we pay them fair prices for their product.
Nicaragua is one of the places where our beans are sourced. The Nicaraguan farm we source from is located in the fertile mountains of the San Juan del Río Coco region, six hours from the capital Managua. Twenty-five years ago, the Unión de Cooperativas Multifuncional Productoras de Café (UCPCO) was formed in the country through a five member cooperative group to sell high quality organic coffee while supporting families and communities in the country. In 1994, UCPCO fought for their fair trade certification. For those of you who don’t know about fair trade companies, they are put through a grueling and extensive process to receive the certification. A fair trade certification lets consumers know they are paying each member of the supply chain with wages that will support a basic standard of living. What is a basic standard of living? Though it differs from country to country, a basic standard of living just means they have what they need to survive above the poverty level. This isn’t something that just allows them to upgrade from an apartment to a house; this is taking people living in a shack with dirt floors to a small home with cement floors, a real roof and brick walls. Although there was originally tension between the Nicaraguan government and the organization, their fair trade certification has helped them take huge leaps in the international coffee market. Furthermore, as organic a group of producers, UCPCO works to protect the environment as well as use sustainable agricultural practices, all because of the earning made from fair trade coffee prices. It makes you feel even better about that morning cup, doesn’t it?
If that isn’t enough, the hope is that with these fair trade wages, the children of the coffee farmers will have the opportunity to be educated. These families have to pay to send their kids to school and as you can imagine, that doesn’t happen often when you are living in extreme poverty. The UCPCO helps the farmers by providing scholarships to kids from elementary school, all the way to college. As Teresa Muñoz, a member of the UCPCO said, “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.” Coffee can change your life by giving you the caffeine rush you need, while simultaneously changing the lives of those overseas who simply want an education for their children.
When you are buying La Terza Coffee you aren’t buying a bag of beans; you are buying a story.