Thursday, January 16, 2014

Farmer Profile: Don Chico

"Brrrrrmmmm" "Brrrrrmmm" "Brrrrrmmmm"

On the way up the mountain to Don Chico's organic plot

As we hike along the road to Don Chico's organic coffee plot, his grandsons Federico and Sergio (estimated ages 8 and 6) are running circles around us while making motorcycle sounds. They are our guides for the hike and have also brought along a piece of black rope to play with. They uncoil the rope and stretch it between them, slingshotting each other around. One boy slides off the road and the other boy throws him the rope and pulls him up the embankment. Soon they are pulling the rope to stretch across the road and attempting to envelop the gringos who are walking along at our own pace. Alex is briefly imprisoned and he then escapes with a run to the delight of the children. The boys are guiding us up and up and up to the top of the hill that serves as the visual edge of the valley that is El Sute. It is a steep climb and the boys keep running back and forth in their rubber boots, getting twice the hike we do. It is fitting that Federico and Sergio are guiding us to Don Chico's plot because everything he does as a farmer seems to be for their benefit.

Sergio (left), Federico (right)

Alex and the boys (I don't recognize the neighbor boy in the blue)
Don Chico has a generosity of spirit and a persistence which has made him the principal farmer and chief promoter in the COFEACOMA organic coffee co-op. When the co-op president, Adalid, needed someone to help him move the coffee to the processing and bagging facility, Don Chico was there to help and wouldn't quit until the job was done. Later, when the coffee had to sit for a couple months before shipping, Don Chico went on his own accord to check that the quality was holding strong. Don Chico provided extra coffee to complete the partial bags that others had sent, and he even sent an extra 100 pounds of coffee to Farmer to Farmer on speculation that we would be able to sell it and pay him later. Don Chico's house serves as the unofficial center for the both the coffee co-op and for the rural lending group in El Sute. He insists on hosting us whenever we arrive in El Sute and will not accept payment for food or lodging. When we arrived in Honduras this year, Don Chico took half a day to ride his horse off the mountain and meet us. After our meeting we declared the intention to visit him first on our trip. His face went dark, and he explained that we would have to wait until later in the trip. His grandson Federico was at another family place in Yoro, halfway across Honduras, and Don Chico did not want him to miss our visit. He announced that he would travel to Yoro and retrieve Federico and he could host us in 5 days time.

We switched hats. They thought it was funny.
Spanish moss in the trees on the way up to Don Chico's organic plot.

Now Federico and Sergio are on the road, cresting the ridge with boundless energy, and we are wondering where they are taking us. Hector and I have been to Don Chico's organic plot before and this is not the way. We are wondering if the boys are playing a joke on us. "Just a little further!" they keep saying. And so it is, seemingly always; but soon we have turned off from the road and we are walking back towards the far side of the ridge along a narrow dirt path. We walk through someone's yard and keep walking right into a coffee patch. "Just a little further!" Finally we are where they wanted to show us. It is a newly planted plot of coffee of about an acre, all under scattered shade trees. Each plant looks like it was planted within the last couple months. The new growth is strong and green. The boys show us the remains of the nursery where the plants came from, and we can see that they must have watered the plants with water from a spring that is bubbling up on the edge of the plot. The shade trees are a mix of leguminous guama and towering pines. I can see why they brought us here. There is a lot of work present in this new plantation, and it is a hopeful vision for the future.

The view from the road up by the ridge near Don Chico's organic coffee plot.

The cleared area is the new plantation. Behind it is an established plantation that belongs to Federico and Sergio. Note the spring on the right.

The remains of the coffee nursery.

From this plot we can now see the other plot that Don Chico usually takes us to. All we have to do is hike up to the ridge a little ways. As we walk, we ask Federico if the coffee patch we are walking through now is also Don Chico's. He says no, it is "de nosostros," meaning "ours." At first we don't understand, but then Federico explains that Don Chico has given that patch of coffee to his two grandsons. Federico is proud of his coffee. When we get to Don Chico's original plot, we are initially worried. He clearly has the Roya, the dreaded coffee rust, and it seems that many of his plants are dying. But then as we crest the ridge, we see that most of his plants are resisting the Roya and are they loaded with green leaves and deep red coffee cherries. Don Chico has succeeded by planting a diversity of varieties and most of them are resistant to the Roya. When we return to Don Chico's house we have a good dinner and we try to teach the boys to play "Uno," which appears to be the first card game they have ever played. Of course, both boys win hands and seem to get all the "Draw Four Wild" cards (beginners luck!). Don Chico is curious to learn what we thought of his coffee plot. He values our opinion. We reassure him that things are not dire.

Don Chico's coffee

The view from Don Chico's

Don Chico is growing coffee under the shade of pine trees. Some believe it can't be done, but this patch looks very good.

Don Chico's full name is Francisco Alvarado Medina. He has a little over 4 acres in organic coffee and is in the process of converting more land into organic production. He has chickens, pigs, horses, and a few milk cows, and he collects manure to make prepared composts. His organic plot on the ridge is at high elevation at 1750 meters above sea level. Don Chico has completely embraced organic farming and even has posted a sign at the entrance to his farm describing it as a "Finca Organica," so I am surprised to learn that he has only been a co-op member for three years. Last year he grew 4000 pounds of coffee, 1500 of which he sent to Farmer to Farmer, the largest supplier of coffee for COFEACOMA. He grows the varieties Catuay, Lempira, and IHCAFE 90. His wife, Simona Vazquez Vazquez, and his daughter Berta manage the harvest, which involves family members and paid help. The coffee is de-pulped using a manual de-pulper and fermented and washed in a concrete water tank. The coffee is dried in greenhouses on metal screens, and he prefers not to store the dried coffee on-site, but rather brings it to the valley where it can be stored in a drier climate. In addition to coffee and the animals, Don Chico also grows corn, beans, vegetables, bananas, citrus, and hardwood shade trees.

Don Chico's farmstead

Sleeping in the drying shed.

The cutest kitty in the world at Don Chico's

The kitten was happiest on my foot.
In the past three years, we have seen striking improvements on his farm. He has built two coffee-drying greenhouses, a wooden storeroom, and a Toyota pick-up truck sits in the yard. When we ask about the pick-up, we learn that six farmers came together to purchase the pick-up. He is also a leader in the rural lending group, which guards members' capital in a bank account and lends it out within and outside of the group, functioning like a bank. Don Chico's lending group has started a little general store in the community, where each member takes a month-long turn staffing the store, and all members share in the earnings. Don Chico has helped bring a potable water system to the community, as well as new roads, and electricity is on the way. Where other farmers seem to be quite independent, the farmers in El Sute have many collective ventures, and Don Chico seems to be right in the center of each of them. He is a community leader, but he knows that all he does, he does for the future of his family. He is 66 years old and he has 2 daughters, Berta and Vilma, and 7 grandchildren. He wants Farmer to Farmer to know that he is very grateful for the opportunity to sell his coffee to us.

Don Chico's coffee was evaluated by our tester as somewhere between "very good" and "excellent," earning a 76.5 rating on the 100-point cupping scale. The comments are: "clean, mellow acidity, hints of wheatgrass, bit thin. But a good cup." I'll say: a very good cup.

Don Chico, Federico, Bertha (Daughter), and Sergio

The whole crew. The family on the right is Don Mario's (a curious neighbor - maybe next year will join the organic coffee co-op)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Farmer Profile: Alexis Lorenzo Gonzales

Don Alexis, with a load of of coffee ready to sell to the intermediary.

When I first meet Alexis Lorenzo he is wearing the brand new Farmer to Farmer t-shirt that we brought down for each of the farmers who sent coffee in 2013.  He sits and listens while we have a meeting with him and about 20 other farmers in El Sute. There is an agronomist named Arnoldo present for the meeting from IHCAFE, the Honduran technical institute that supports coffee farmers. Arnoldo is talking at length about quality issues, followed by other people who also talk at length, including me. If there is one thing coffee farmers can talk about for a long time, it is coffee. People are getting up and walking around to stretch every so often. Alexis is on the outside of the conversation and says nothing. He has come to the meeting with a couple purposes that have little to do with all the talking.

there's me in the blue jacket and Alexis behind me in the green shirt.

Near the end of the meeting, there is a request for participation from the audience. A young man stands up and makes an eloquent pitch for people to grow organic vegetables near their houses. As the visiting Gringo, I am asked what I think about organic vegetables, and of course I say I am in favor of people growing vegetables. After the meeting, Alexis introduces the young man to me as his son, Blas. Blas is attending university in Agronomy and he is looking to do practical project work in his village, supporting organic gardening. Alexis had encouraged Blas to come and see if Farmer to Farmer could support his son’s project. I promise to see if we can bring some seeds down with us next year.

In the little that we get to know Alexis, we get to see that he is doing everything to support the education of his children. All four of his children have received some advanced schooling. His daughter Johana has graduated and come home to be the nurse for the community, and Blas is finishing his degree and helping his father make organic fertilizers. The other two, Alex Geovani and Rudi Ariel are also in school. As we talk it becomes clear that the sale of the coffee is entirely necessary to pay for all the education expenses. In fact, later that evening, Alexis returns to where we are staying and he pulls me aside. He asks if I know anyone who might be interested in buying a couple acres of good farmland; he has a tuition payment due soon or a son will have to leave school. I encourage him to get some coffee ready to sell to Farmer to Farmer and that our down payment will help make the tuition payment. I hope he doesn’t have to sell off his land.

My experience with Alexis makes me even more committed to maintaining a good price for our farmers. The global commodity market fluctuates significantly from year to year. Two years ago the global price was twice what it is now, but the coffee farmers’ expenses have stayed the same or increased. So right now farmers who made financial commitments when the prices were high are having a hard time keeping up with those commitments, with half the income. Add to that that these same farmers have been hit hard by the Coffee Rust (Roya) and lost an average of half their crop. Times are tough. Our commitment to farmers hits reality when we can see that our consistent high price from year to year can allow the farmers to honor their own financial commitments, like tuition, and make long range plans. My only wish is that we could buy more of their crop. Right now we buy only a portion of what each of our farmers produce, and the rest they are forced to sell at much lower prices to the intermediaries who buy coffee in their village.

Alexis describes his farm for me because we don't have time to visit on this trip. He has about 4 acres of organic coffee. His farm is at 1550 meters above sea level and he has been organic for 4 years. His biggest problem right now is the Roya, which has affected almost all of his coffee. He grows mostly the susceptible varieties: Arabica, Paca, Caturra, and Burbon. His processing facility is simple. He has a manual de-pulper, ferments the coffee in sacks, dries the coffee in the drying shed of a friend, and transports the coffee in the truck of a friend. He grows his own corn and beans too. When he is asked for a message for Farmer to Farmer members, he says "Thanks to God, Life and Future Generations."

Don Alexis coffee was not cupped separately, because his coffee was sent mixed with Don Chico's coffee. Please see Don Chico's profile for comments on the cupping of that coffee.

Corrin with Alexis, sporting the same t-shirt

There goes a load of coffee


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Farmer Profile: Salvador Sanchez

Don Salvador, Dona Maria Angela and their family (there's the yellow motor)

When we walk up to the house of Salvador Sanchez, his family is concentrated around a yellow gas motor that is mounted on a post next to his concrete coffee fermentation tank. As we come closer, we notice that the pull-cord has snapped and his son is trying to thread a new rope in so they can get back to work. There are bags and bags of fresh-picked coffee cherries lined up and ready to be de-pulped. If they can get the little motor going, then they can run a belt to the de-pulping machine and make short work of a project that would take a manual de-pulper all day. The project draws our friend Hector in and soon he is adding his opinion and asking for specific tools. Don Salvador shows up and asks us to have a seat in the kitchen for coffee and sweet bread and so we can do the interview. I am grateful, because I was not able to add anything to the motor fix-it project.

Fresh picked coffee cherries

We first met Don Salvador 3 years ago when we visited the coffee farmers of El Sute for the first time. He showed us his organic plot and the towering sweetgum and guama trees that provide the shade. The plants were mostly the old variety known as "Indio," and they looked overgrown and not very productive. It was like being in a forest. There was another section of the the organic plot where he had renewed the plot through replanting and pruning, and that looked promising, with lush healthy young plants. This year though, when Hector visited Don Salvador's organic plot he declared that it had almost all been destroyed by the Roya (coffee rust). Although Salvador sent 1200 pounds in 2013, his organic production will drop significantly for 2014. He probably won't see a loss in income though, because Don Salvador has hedged his bets and grown some conventional coffee too. After our interview, he takes me to see the new plantation of conventional coffee.

Don Salvador's 3-year-old conventional coffee plants 

My heart sinks to see how good his conventional coffee looks. He took a corn and beans field right next to his house and has converted it into a coffee plot over the last three years. He is growing these Roya resistant varieties completely without shade trees on the steep slopes, but they look quite healthy and they are loaded with harvest after only three years. I tell Salvador how nice they look, and he smiles and asks us to take his photo amid the dark green coffee plants with the bright red cherries. I ask him about shade trees and he points to a mature plantation across the hill from us and says that the plants look healthy over there without shade. I have to agree. I know that organic agriculture is better for the soil, better for the shade trees and the diversity they support, and can result in a better tasting coffee. But it is hard to argue that Don Salvador wasn't smart to hedge his bets and keep some of his land in conventional coffee. This year his family will eat off of the profits from the conventional coffee.

A proud farmer

The Roya presents a special challenge for our friends in Honduras who want to grow organic coffee. In the past, many farmers were able to enter the coffee co-op because they have a plot of coffee that they have grown using "natural" methods. By this they mean that they have applied no fertilizer at all, chemical or organic. The old varieties are especially suited to this sort of "ignore-ganic" way of growing: have old coffee trees and old shade trees and give the coffee plot very little maintenance. This actually has worked quite well. The yields are lower, but the inputs are nil, and the old varieties of coffee taste great. But the Roya is devastating to the old, low-maintenance varieties. New varieties must be planted, and those new varieties are rumored to do better without as much shade. This could be a disaster for the mountain. If everyone cuts down their shade trees, then erosion and flooding could become much worse. And the dry season will become much drier as the micro-climates change. It is essential for our co-op members to find a middle path, one that uses the new varieties and maintains the shade trees. They will need to improve soil fertility practices in order to meet the demands of the new varieties. The price premium that we offer is enough to keep Don Salvador interested. He will keep his organic plot and keep improving his organic practices, even as he continues to improve his conventional plot. Without the price premium though, he might not join the co-op.

The neighbors harvesting mature shade-free coffee on very steep slopes

Don Salvador is a savvy farmer. It is clear that he has made improvements throughout his farm. There is a new greenhouse-style coffee drying shed and the aforementioned motorized de-pulper. He knows his coffee and he cares for the quality of the coffee throughout the process. His cupping results turned out quite well. He has a little solar panel which collects enough energy to power a small florescent light for use in the kitchen each night. He is a leader in the community, and to have him in the co-op gives the co-op a position of respect. Don Salvador is the sort of skeptical thinker that keeps any group honest. I am pleased when we are able to come through for him and continue to earn his trust. We have seen him move from stand-offish a few years ago, to warm and welcoming this year. It is the sort of relationship that can grow over time.

The fermentation tank

Don Salvador has about 2 acres of organic coffee and an additional 10 acres in conventional coffee. He is one of the founding members of the organic co-op COFEACOMA and has been with the co-op for 9 years. His farm is at 1500 meters above sea level. In addition to coffee, he grows corn, beans and bananas. He is 59 years old and has 7 children and 9 grandchildren, all living nearby. His wife, Maria Angela, greeted us in the kitchen. Later, we learned that she is suffering from asthma and needs care and medicine. This is all the more reason to maintain our relationship with this family - the extra money they get from Farmer to Farmer can translate directly into needed care. The quality of Don Salvador's coffee is exceptional, one of our best micro-lots. His coffee earned 78.25 on the 100-point cupping scale. The tasters comments were: "Sweet, chocolate, fruity, with medium body." We hope his organic plot recovers from the Roya and he sticks with the co-op.


Farmer Profile: Don Polo

Left to Right: Don Polo, Fredy Huben (Son), Nuvia (Granddaughter), Lester Francisco (Son), Alvaro (Son), Edwin (Grandson), Dona Graciela Aguilar
Arriving at Don Polo's in Hector's Truck

When we approach the house of Leopolo Euceda we know we are at the center of the village. There is a school and a new church right before we get to the house and a little soccer field right behind the house. Don Polo lives in the community of El Tamarindo on the southwest side of the Comayagua mountain in central Honduras. Everyone calls Leopolo by a nickname, "Polo," and inevitably they use the respectful elder term "Don" in front of his name. We are here to visit him and his family as part of our tour of the coffee farms that sent coffee to Farmer to Farmer for the 2013 Honduran crop. His family has panoramic views of the valley, but as we pull up the place is shrouded in an afternoon mist.

Polo's backyard, looking toward the mountain.
When he comes out to meet us, I recognize him instantly. He has a thin, sun-weathered face and broad smile. Last year as we traveled down the mountain, we were behind schedule and we did not have time to come up to his farm and meet him. So he and his son brewed some coffee and walked down to meet us at the turn-off for his house in El Tamarindo. That little pit stop was exactly what we needed and the coffee was good and strong. But this year we had decided to do an extended visit and stay the night.

Pine resin extraction in El Tamarindo

As we came in under the eaves of his house, I noticed instantly the huge bags full of beautiful white, yellow and blue corn. I picked up some cobs of the blue corn and felt an instant kinship because we have been growing a nearly identical looking variety on our farm for the last two years. Seeing the corn reminded me that El Tamarindo is an old community, with relatively recent conversion to coffee growing. Unlike some of the other communities, the coffee farmers here also grow their own basic foods of corn, beans and squash.  

Corn, patrimony of El Tmarindo
We had planned to camp, but with the wet weather, we were glad that Don Polo offered that we could stay in his son's house, which was right next door. His son Orlin is a testament to how coffee can help rural Hondurans gain an education. Orlin was able to attend high school in Comayagua, due mostly to the income from coffee. Orlin has served as a sort of assistant manager for the co-op, learning to fill out all of the necessary forms for organic certification and exporting. Orlin has built a new adobe house in El Tamarindo, but he is down in the valley working, so we are able to set up inside his house.

Orlin's brand new house.

The next morning I am up early and I enter Don Polo's kitchen. His wife, Graciela is working on the morning's tortillas. I have the obligatory coffee and then run to get my fellow Wisconsinites to see the whole tortilla process. There is a hand-crank grinder where the soaked corn kernels get ground into a wet paste. Then the paste is piled on a slightly depressed flat stone. Then in short quick motions the corn paste is further ground by hand using another rolling-pin shaped stone. The resulting dough is very fine and is quickly worked into little hockey-puck shapes and then these are pressed into a flattened tortilla which is quickly toasted on the wood-fired griddle. The dough inflates briefly on the hot griddle and then gets flipped over by hand. The finished hot tortillas are piled in a cloth-lined basket. When we ask, she says she makes 80 to 100 tortillas every morning, to feed the extended family for all three meals.

Graciela's stone with tortilla dough
After we make our own clumsy attempts at hand-grinding corn on the stone, Dona Graciela brings out a dusty old grinding stone and hand stone. At first I think I am looking at their old stone, but then she explains that they found the grinding stone buried in a field. These are archeological artifacts! They speculate that the people who lived in this area must have buried their grinding stone to protect it from being stolen and then something must have happened so they couldn't come back for it. There is no way of telling how old it is. I am reminded that the daily tortilla-making ritual which we have witnessed this morning has been happening in this place more-or-less identically for over a thousand years.

The buried stones and pot.

Don Polo has both organic and conventional coffee plots. He has been with the co-op for 6 years. His 2 acre organic plot is right next to the house and it is loaded with deep red coffee cherries. I am surprised that he has not yet harvested. He explains that they adhere to the old methods of harvesting based on the moon signs. When there is a new moon, you must wait 7 days before harvesting, in order to not have adverse effects on the coffee tree. He explains that they know how to use the moon signs for other things, like when to cut a pine tree for which uses. This is the first I have heard of using a moon sign to decide when to harvest coffee, but it fits right in with our archeological tour from this morning.

Polo, showing me how to pick coffee.

Don Polo has planted the Roya-resistent varieties of Catimor and Lempira, and the plants look great. But there is also about a 20% loss from the Roya in the other varieties he has planted: Typico, Burbon, and Catuay. There is an astonishing variety of shade trees nearby too. Since this is the home plot, they must enjoy having many types of fruit right at hand. There are bananas, avocados, mangoes, citrus, as well as some rangy vine-crops. El Tamarindo is relatively high elevation, and Don Polo's house sits at 1500 meters above sea level. They have a manual de-pulper, ferment in a concrete water tank, and dry the coffee on a concrete patio. They pay freight for a pick-up truck driver to move their coffee to Comayagua when it is time to export. Don Polo has benefited from Orlin's interest in organic agriculture, and he has brought prepared composting with micro-nutrients to Don Polo's farm. His coffee cupped very well, with a "medium acidity, medium body, and a clean and sweet taste." The rating for his coffee was 77 on the 100-point cupping scale.

The best tortillas I had during the trip were those that Dona Graciela prepared that morning. Hot off the griddle, with a little salt, or with a small bowl of creamy new, red beans, these tortillas were the sort that you can't get anymore in a big city like Comayagua. Don Polo and Dona Graciela are like their tortillas: authentic, warm and inviting. We were all glad we stayed with Don Polo and look forward to more visits in the future.

Farmer Profile: Don Isidro Baquis

When I think back to before the recent Farmer to Farmer Honduras trip, I remember a time when to me Don Isidro was little more than a set of initials painted in blue on a burlap coffee sack. I had met most of the other farmers on previous trips, but I could not put a face to the name of Isidro. His coffee came in with very high quality and I was eager to meet him. Now I have visited his place and can bring you along with me.

When we arrive in the community of El Tamarindo it is already mid-afternoon. It is raining (again) and folks are inclined to settle into our accommodations at Don Polo's house. They have offered us coffee and I can feel the long conversations beginning. There is a little time warp that can happen when we visit coffee farmers in Honduras, especially when Hector and Adalid are along (our Honduras trip guides who are also coffee farmers). No one seems to be in a hurry to do the next thing and conversations seem to go in deep arcing circles. This disregard for hurrying on to the next thing grates on my sensibilities, but I also can feel the palpable relief of not having to worry and hurry, and I appreciate that. Today I feel the time warp settling in and I shake my head: "Not Today!" there are places we NEED to go. We have come to El Tamarindo to interview Don Polo (where we are staying) and Don Isidro (who lives a 45 minute hike up the mountain from Polo's house). I do the math in my head: 3 pm now, 4 pm arrival at Isidro's, interview and photos for an hour, return to Polo's by 6 pm. I start to worry that it will be dark when we are walking back if we don't hurry up and start walking. My familiar sense of urgency comes in handy, occasionally!

So we walk up the road until we come to a deeply rutted steep footpath, which takes us further up and up. Don Polo is along and he keeps pointing way up to a ridge in front of us. Don Isidro lives over that ridge, he says. I am glad not to have a heavy backpack as we climb the trail. Soon the forest opens up to a scarred landscape of fallen pine trees. Polo explains that a person from outside the community has purchased that land and felled about 12 acres of pine forest to plant coffee. Yikes! Nearby we see a fresh landslide, the inevitable result of such deforestation. It isn't only outsiders who are cutting trees in El Tamarindo; with the coming of the Roya coffee fungus, most new plantations are being established without much shade in an attempt to increase airflow and slow fungal growth, and old plantations are being opened up to the sun by cutting shade trees. We climb past the landslide and keep climbing. It is still raining lightly when we make it to the ridge and then the hike levels out. Soon we are arriving at Don Isidro's house. 

Deforestation to plant shade-free coffee.

My first impression is that it looks like there is some new construction going on, which is usually a good sign. He is busy making some new coffee drying racks. There is shiny hardware cloth and fresh cut pine boards, all in process. We can see recent improvements in the coffee de-pulping set-up and a new fermentation tank. His house seems to have a recent addition, where the kitchen is. His house is the highest elevation residence of anyone we meet on this trip, at 1750 meters above sea level, and we feel like we are on a mountain-top. Isidro has some sad looking tomato and pepper plants on an elevated garden bed next to the coffee de-pulper. It is too cold at this elevation for these heat-loving plants to thrive. The misty breeze pushes us inside the warm house. We are soon invited for coffee and we do the interview. I hope I can sleep tonight after all this afternoon coffee. Having forgotten my notebook, I ask Alex to oblige by recording the interview on his ipod (details to come soon to this spot - come back to check).    

Don Isidro has both organic and conventional coffee, and the organic plot was almost totally destroyed by the Roya. He tells us that luckily his conventional coffee has some resistant varieties. He sent 450 pounds of organic coffee in 2013, but with the Roya damage he wonders if he can send any coffee at all this year. Isidro's coffee cupped well, like all of the COFEACOMA farmers. The coffee scored a 76 on the 100-point cupping scale, with the tasters comments: "bit thin, sweet, fruity, and straw." Thanks Don Isidro, for all your hard work.

Becky. We are almost there!

Isidro's water bottle

Corrin, enjoying her coffee

I love her smile!

Corn patch behind the house

The kitchen