El Salvador – Ahuachapán
Renacer was established in 2020 to work with small producers around the Canton (Area) Los Naranjos who farm on small 1 – 2 manzana plots of land. The farmers in this area main problems were poor plant nutrition, increased occurrence of diseases, poor quantities of production and lack of access to market. The potential for quality was spotted with producers in this region as they had bourbon and pacas varietal mainly as well as being at altitudes of around 1400masl.
The Technical field school which is led by Sigfredo Corado who had already started to help producers in this region before Renacer was established. Sigrfredo is a retired Agronomy Professor who had established with business partners the los Naranjos Group farms (Los Angeles & Finca Noruega) as well as a wet mill. At Renacer he leads a team of 6 field technicians to help small to medium producers in the area by focusing on best farm practises that are restorative for the land and soil as well as beneficial for the yield and quality of the coffee. The field school is based at the farm named Finca Noruega where there is a class held twice a month for the students. Throughout the year there are 3 modules and these look to focus on the 4 R’s the program have developed for soil health.
All the training takes place at Finca Noruega where the technical school is based the students work the test plots where they can implement the knowledge gained in class before applying it to their own farms. Finca Noruega is 43 Manzanas planted with a range of varieties from bourbon to gesha.
In the first year there were 10 students who were part of the program and with the work they put in the los Naranjos group agreed to centralise their wet milling and use Beneficio San Rafael located between the two hills of El Pilon and Cerro Aguila at 1450 masl. This would help the producers create a more uniform and quality controlled coffee to sell together. At the end of the 2019/20 harvest they established a committee of four producers from the group who were elected. This committee would learn about the commercilisation of their coffees, how to cup and market them. They would then be involved in the total process and understand the true value of their coffees and provide transparency to all members about the quality and prices received.
This year the training has been delivered to 43 producers and with 10 of these being female producers. The graduated students each year then become Renacer ambassadors and in their communities some are selected to help distrubute and share information to their fellow producers at key moments in the annual cycle. This is all supported by a Renacer field officers who works with the groups. In total there are about 350 producers delivering coffee who are part of the Renacer group.
This coffee is a washed coffee where all cherry is delivered to the San Rafael beneficio. Here the coffees is washed cleaned and floated to remove immatures. The coffee is then pulped and fermented until a ph of 4.5 is reached. After this the coffee is then washed and taken to the raised beds where it is moved for the first three days continuously and then after this for the remaining 7 – 10 days it is moved hourly until below 11%.