Ampersand Organic Guatemala Nahuala, Medium Roast
Cupping Profile: Dark chocolate with a ripe grape lining. This coffee has a mild round acidity, a pleasant sweet-chocolate aftertaste, and a full body. These attributes are simple and complimentary. Crowd pleaser. Medium Roast. 12 oz bag. Whole Beans.
What's in it?
The indigenous Mayans have been mired in discrimination and systematic oppression since the Spanish landed there and colonized Guatemala in the 1500s. This co-op, of Nahuala, consists of indigenous Mayans who are also survivors of the horrendous civil war that tore through the country from 1960-1996. This community in Pasac had come a long way since the end of the war when the entire country was in a tailspin, and no one knew who they could trust. Because of culturally ingrained suspicion and distrust, it took a few years for women to begin meeting as a Café Femenino group. In the beginning years of the Café Femenino Program, the meetings consisted of 20 men and two token women. Initially, the men did not want the women to meet independently because they did not want their wives viewed as "worldly." Once the men understood that Café Femenino was a business partnership that required regularly scheduled meetings by the women farmers, the men became amenable.
After that, this Café Femenino women's group took off like wildfire because the women wanted this opportunity so badly. Indeed, this group produced the fastest, most dramatic change of all the Café Femenino women's groups. At the time, many of the women in the co-op were not literate and did not speak Spanish but rather K'iche. The Café Femenino country coordinator provided workshops to introduce the concept of future planning, which was a novel to them because they had been living a day-to-day survival for such a long time.
By the second year of Café Femenino, the meeting participation flip-flopped to 2 men and 20 women. In May of 2019, when Ampersand visited this co-op with Organic Products Trading Company, there were 146 women in attendance at the reception and presentation.
The Guatemala Café Femenino program has achieved economic diversification, including the production of coffee blossom honey, a school supplies shop, a smoothie store, a pizza parlor, and a self-owned and controlled micro-lending operation. Additionally, the Café Femenino Foundation, in partnership with other non-profits, funded the building of a local library, which has been an incredibly useful addition to the greater area, especially for the children's books.
This co-op will be the second Regenerative Organic Certification target after Peru.
Product of Cafe Femenino Guatemala. 1/2 percent of Ampersand's revenue is donated to the International Women's Coffee Alliance.
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