Behind a rich cup of coffee, there is a titanic job that begins with planting and harvesting, however, the working conditions of the producing families are adverse. Meet SF Bay Coffee, the company with social responsibility that encourages the sector with economic and sustainable programs
The coffee industry represents strong wealth for Mexico, however, the conditions involved in the production process are very adverse, for example, the harvest cycles mean months of hard work, and when the harvest finally ends, the largest begin: Get the right price for the quality and work behind a good cup of coffee.
Around the world, close to 100 million people depend on coffee as their primary income, and 80% of that coffee comes from small producers, where 7 out of 10 live below the international poverty line ($ 2 a day).
All their presentations of Mexican coffee in the country come from small producers in Chiapas, with whom they have been working for more than 35 years. Its process and production is carried out high in the Chiapas jungle, which goes from sowing, harvesting, grain separation, and drying to roasting and distribution, thus achieving quality coffee.
Faced with this challenging scenario, the SF Bay Coffee company is positioned as a great ally of the economy of coffee families in Mexico, through its gourmet and specialty coffee made with the highest quality standards, its mission is to find the varieties of the world’s finest Arabica coffee beans to roast the best coffee beans by hand. This allows them to offer a wide tasting of coffee with diverse origins throughout the world, and in this way, help more than 1,000 small producers in Mexico.
Committed to caring for the neediest communities and the environment, this great company offers its consumers coffee of international origin, which comes from some 32,000 small producers from different parts of the world. This coffee is imported into Mexico to carry out its final process: roasting and grinding, thus achieving a coffee with unique flavors, from the plant to the cup.
A complicated picture
In Mexico, small producers have been the hardest hit in the coffee industry.
During the last 10 years, the costs to obtain a quality harvest have been at the highest levels due to various circumstances, such as climate changes and diseases that have developed. Likewise, the value of the coffee that is quoted in the commodity market is used as a reference in this industry to buy the harvest, however, it has been at the lowest levels.
Adverse conditions have been maintained year after year, leaving many producers with debts and land in very bad conditions with very old coffee trees, little production, and pests, all of which are important factors to further decrease their productivity.
On average, a small producer has 1 hectare of coffee, which should produce approximately 1,150 kilograms of coffee. However, with the conditions that have arisen in recent years, today they produce 200 to 290 kilograms of coffee.
With these low levels of production, a family only earns an annual income of 8,000 and 11,600 pesos according to what the market dictates. This is less than $ 1,000 pesos per month regardless of your production costs.
Aware of all this and always looking to support small producers, SF Bay Coffee has created 4 pillars of change in the industry:
- Pay the producer above their cost of production.
- Work to help them increase the quantity and quality of the coffee they produce on
- Improve the social conditions of farms.
- Improve the social conditions of the communities.
To create a positive change in the coffee industry, SF Bay Coffee has a support program for small producers, to achieve one of these important objectives the company donates young and healthy plants for the renovation of coffee plantations. In addition, it provides training to teach cultivation techniques and production processes that are environmentally friendly, as well as discoveries and techniques that they have had to deal organically with pests and diseases.
“The effort and the family that has formed SF Bay Coffee in Chiapas goes beyond small producers reaches six coffee communities where they have a direct impact on the quality of life of 7,000 families, is reflected in more than 5,000 hectares of coffee and They work with more than 1000 small producers. In addition, they generate more than 2,300 indirect jobs and 1,300 direct jobs, ”says the company.
COVID-19: Impact on the coffee industry
The changes that COVID-19 has brought to Mexico and the world are also impacting the fluctuation of coffee prices, and in this sense, the threat is also for the coffee communities, since when they stop working they can lose entire crops.
For some years now, this company has been working on innovation projects to give added value to coffee through derived products. This with the aim of diversifying its sources so as not to completely depend on coffee as an economic activity, and thus add use to those organic components of the fruit or coffee bean that are largely forgotten by the industry.
Under the situation that Mexico and the world are going through due to COVID-19, the producing communities need the support of large companies through emerging measures that encourage commercial activities, this to prevent the economic blow from the pandemic from reaching the fields coffee growers, and consequently, the producer families who are behind a delicious cup of coffee.
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