We are very excited to announce our newest coffee release and producer partner, Hector Ventura!
This relationship comes from Catracha Coffee Co. a non profit started by Mayra Orellana-Powell in her home community of La Paz, Santa Elena, Honduras. Catracha looks to recognize the efforts of small producers through traceable single farm micro-lots and transparent individualized profit sharing determined by the quality of each producer’s coffee.
Pricing is a really important factor in coffee and something that is not often discussed enough. Catracha producers are paid twice for their coffee. First, when the dried coffee parchment is delivered to Catracha Coffee (January to March) and then a second payment is made when the coffee has been sold in the specialty coffee market (July). This second payment is part of Catracha's profit sharing initiative. The total amount of money going into the producer’s pocket or the farm gate price of the coffee each year has been about $2.50 per pound (first payment-$1.00 and second payment-$1.50). As a point of reference, the Fair Trade minimum is $1.40 per pound FOB (fresh off boat). These three letters (FOB) are important because all the costs after the coffee leaves the farm are included in the FOB price and deducted from the amount paid to the producer, which makes it more difficult to know how much the producer actually gets.
Our release from Hector's farm is a 5 bag micro lot exclusive to Souvenir. This light-medium roast has flavor notes of red apples, caramel chocolate, cinnamon sugar with a nice thick body. Very similar to our previous Costa Rica Cloza Estate. This bag will be $26 mostly to pay Hector properly for his delicious coffee, but the last dollar on every bag will be a "Third Payment" for Hector and other producers in Santa Elena. The Third Payment will be split three ways. One part goes straight back to Hector, one part would be used to increase the wages of coffee pickers, and the third part would be used to create an emergency medical care response fund to help producers who are dealing with unexpected expenses from a medical emergency.
Hector produces coffee on his 2.5 acre farm called El Naranjo in the community of Tapuiman. He lives in the nearby community of Sisiguara with his wife and 3 children. For the last three years he has been working with Catracha Coffee Co, improving his farm management practices using lime to control the pH of his soil, fertilizing with organic compost, and spraying organic fungicides to control levels of leaf rust. This is the first year that Hector has been able to process enough coffee for a single-producer micro-lot. Hector plans to use the extra income from the sale of his coffee to pay for more farm improvements.
We are so excited about this coffee and the meaning behind it. Souvenir has always been guided by the value of coffee first, then people. This relationship and everything Catracha Coffee works to do in the coffee industry aligns with that value. We hope you'll get the chance to try out Hector's coffee and be apart of this special project with us!