COMSA cooperative Café Orgánico La Paz region Marcala, Honduras
Lajikkeet: Typica, Bourbon, Catuai, Caturra
100% arabica, organic
Café Orgánico Marcala (COMSA) was founded in December of 2001 with a vision of creating new and alternative development opportunities for small-scale coffee farmers in the region of Marcala, Honduras. The organization originally brought together 69 small-scale farmers of Lenca origin who were interested in selling their coffee collectively under the umbrella of a rural credit union.
Members of COMSA grow high quality certified organic coffee on small farms averaging 3.8 hectares. Many also grow fruit and vegetables, raise cattle, pigs and poultry and keep fish in ponds. Their coffee crop is purchased by COMSA who carry out primary processing then buy in milling, packing and export services. COMSA also purchases coffee from non-member farmers.
At the time when Comsa was founded, it was the time of the global coffee crisis when world prices hit rock bottom making it unprofitable for farmers to harvest their coffee. Most farmers in the area were forced to abandon their farms and many migrated to the cities or to the US in search of work. COMSA farmers realised they had to find a different way of trading coffee and took the decision to join together to access the organic market for its higher prices.
With support from a rural business development organisation, COMSA was formally registered as a limited company in 2001 with a membership of 65 farmers. This was the beginning of a journey in which they learnt that organic culture wasn’t just organic fertiliser, it was about incorporating principles and values into farming practices and balancing the needs of business, society and the environment. Membership has since grown to 800 farmers, a quarter of them women.
Organic and FairTrade certified cooperative.