Guatemala Dos De Julio
The Guatemalan coffee industry is a formidable one. Producing coffees from areas in the volcanic mountain ranges such as Huehuetenango, Coban, Fraijanes and Antigua – Guatemala is as famous for its regional specials as it is for the SHB and HB grades it more commonly exports. A mixture of small holder farms and larger estates make up the mainly washed production of Guatemala. The coffee flavourings offer a wide range from Chocolate and cherries, to citric acidity, sweetness caramel and nuts. Often a favourite on the cupping table of green coffee traders, Guatemalan coffee offers the chance for huge complexity in the cup, and richness, body and mouthfeel, Guatemala really does offer it all. Producers in Guatemala are passionate and careful with their crop, and whilst local infrastructure may not always favour them, this does little to deter the determination for producing ever better cupping coffees year after year.
The Cooperativa Agrícola Integral Dos de Julio, R.L. is located in Santa Cruz Naranjo, to the south and east of Guatemala City, in the department of Santa Rosa. A primary Co-op, it was founded 40 years ago in July 1980 with 20 associates and has steadily grown to 129, of whom 92 are male, and 37 female. These members are spread out amongst the villages El Teocinte, El Naranjo, El Potrerillo, El Bosque, Las Joyas, Agua Blanca and some villages in neighbouring municipalities such as Barberena (Aldea Las Astas, El Quebracho) and Nueva Santa Rosa (Aldea Ojo de Agua), Pueblo nuevo Viñas, Santa Rosa de Lima, Santa María Ixhuatan and Cuilapa.
Not all of the farmers have the ability to process cherry directly. This means that cherries are collected and some will be transported to another cooperative members’ farm that provides a ‘maquila’ service, as a benefit from one cooperative member to another. There they are able to pulp, wash and ferment the coffee within a short time frame to maintain quality and prevent any unwanted fermentation and spoilage. The fermentation for the washed coffee takes around 12 hours and once dried, the parchment is then delivered to the cooperatives’ warehouse for collation and registration before final transportation to the dry mills of Fedecocagua, the secondary Cooperative, in Palin, Escuintla. There are 8 of these maquilas located as centrally as possible to those areas that need them the most.
Average production currently sits at 16 to 20 quintals of dry parchment coffee (quintal = roughly 46kg) per block, with an average yearly production for the coop as a whole at 25,000 quintals.
Being a primary co-operative member of another cooperative association (a Secondary Co-op) means that they can also access credit facilities for maintenance and harvesting requirements, technical training, export ability and marketing assistance too. The latter helps small co-ops and famers reach larger markets abroad that have traditionally had many hurdles to overcome before reaching.
Country Region | Guatamala, Fraijanes
City | Santa Cruz Naranjo
Average Altitude | 1 050 to 1 550 meters
Varieties | Catuai, Caturra, Bourbon, Pacas, Pache
Type | SHB / FANCY SHB
Crop Season | November to February
Crop Method | Handpicking
Other Productions | Corne, bean, banana, chili, tomato, string bean
Typography | Rolling
Soil Type | Clay loam moderately deep
Temperature | 23°C
Annual Rainfall | 1 300 mm