Region: Chiapas Co op: Cesmach Varietal: Typica, Bourbon, Caturra Process: Washed Altitude: 1300 - 1650 MASL Imported by Red Fox
Coffee in Mexico is in transition in many ways. Recognized as a leader in blended certified coffees (the first “Fair Trade” anything was coffee from Mexico), the country has been facing increasing costs of production, declining profitability, and widespread lack of transparency. Faced with these obstacles, farmers are demanding a different way forward.
Cesmach (Campesinos Ecológicos de la Sierra Madre de Chiapas), founded in 1994, is a well established co-operative in Southern Chiapas operating at the base of Jaltenango in the Sierra Madre mountain range. Many of the farms are located in the buffer zone of the El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve, one of the most important protected areas in North America – making organic farming practices, clean water management, and use of shade in growing coffee required.
Producers have been slowly recovering from a devastating spell of coffee leaf rust that began in 2015. Cesmach has made a concerted effort to access higher paying markets through quality separation among their 500+ farmer members, focusing on quality control and defining areas with higher potential for cup quality, separating farmer deliveries accordingly, and thus receiving higher price premiums.