In the Family and For the Family

By: Chris Davidson

Promotora de Desarollo Cooperativa de las Segovias (PRODECOOP) is a secondary cooperative made up of 38 base coops and over 2,700 individual producers. Of these 27% are women, around 50% are certified organic and 100% certified fair trade. The vast majority of PRODECOOP’s members are located in three coffee-producing departments in the north of Nicaragua: Estelí, Madriz and Nueva Segovias. Depending on the area the growing altitude can range from 1,200 – 1,500 masl, and most farmers are working with Caturra & Bourbon varieties.

PRODECOOP stands out for their holistic and altruistic commitment to their members’ well-being. Included in their core values are gender and generational equity, climate change adaptation, food security and a democratic leadership structure. In their vision is the motto “Work based in the family and for the family.” Quality of product, service and environment plus social development equals quality of life for the families.

PRODECOOP’s staff educate members in organic production of honey, cocoa, fruits and vegetables, assuring their food security and diversifying their income. The coop helps the producers obtain financing for inputs and assists members with administration and fees for obtaining and maintaining their certifications. PRODECOOP agronomists provide on-farm member education as well as providing group workshops on farm management, processing and fiscal responsibility.

Coffee deliveries from PRODECOOP are extremely consistent due largely to their farmer education programs, as well as the coop’s skilled quality assurance staff and state of the art dry mill. Dark chocolate, cranberry and walnut are often used to describe PRODECOOP’s lots, and a lively acidity and brisk aftertaste highlight the painstaking effort taken by the farmers during their washing. PRODECOOP’s SHG EP’s are extremely versatile as certified blend components and sweet enough to stand up well as a single origin offering.

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