Fernando is a fourth generation coffee farmer. His great-grandfather was the first to start growing coffee in El Salvador in 1865, while he was president of the country. Fernando is El Salvador's most awarded coffee farmer, having excelled in the Cup of Excellence every year for the past few decades.
His plantations are located in the Santa Ana region, with the best crops coming from the vicinity of the Santa Ana volcano itself.
Fernando believes that coffee is the most important drink in the world, bringing together people from all backgrounds. There is no place on Earth where coffee is not known. For him, it is both tradition and family. For decades, families have harvested together, sharing the work and the joy of coffee. Not only is coffee his passion, but also running, up to five times a week. Fernando grows several coffee varieties: bourbon, pacamara, caturra, catuai, geisha.
Sergio is a third generation coffee farmer. His farm was the first to be established in the San Fernando region of Nicaragua, back in the 1950s. His grandfather acquired it in 1965 and Sergio inherited it from his father in 2002. He realized early on that growing specialty coffee was the only sustainable way to be in the coffee business, as the price depended on quality, not on the traders in New York.
His passion for coffee is beyond imagination: when Daisuke first visited him in 2005, they worked together for three months on the farm to launch a long-term project to grow some of the world's best coffees. Unsurprisingly, after years of working together, spending every day on the farm and getting to know each other's families, they became friends and developed long-lasting relationships.
Of Sergio's three children, his daughter is already helping out on the farm, while his sons are still playing there, but they are keen to learn the skills of coffee farming from their father. His two best coffees are Pacamara and Java.
Samuel is an agricultural engineer who has been around coffee since birth. In 2017, when he was only 24, his father passed away and he had to take over the entire farm, the coffee business and the responsibility for almost 100 workers each season. For him, these people are not just workers, they are his family. Like all his workers, he lives on the farm, sharing his home, his life and his knowledge with the families around him.
His grandfather founded the farm 40 years ago, while Samuel’s interest in specialty coffee began at the age of 16, when he tasted specialty coffee for the first time in his life. From that point on, there was no turning back: he dedicated his life to growing the highest quality coffee possible, which resulted in his Maracaturra variety winning fourth place in the 2018 Cup of Excellence competition.
He is the youngest coffee farmer to reach such a high level in the world of coffee. Although his and Daisuke's favorite is Maracaturra, he also grows other varieties such as Caturra.
Luis is a fourth-generation coffee farmer and also a pastor in his small community in the Jalapa region of Nicaragua. Although his family has been growing coffee for decades, 15 years ago he and his father started a joint venture, La Bendición ("The Blessing") Farm, which specializes in specialty coffees and now grows some of the best coffees in the world. In 2018, two Red Pacamara varieties won first and fifth place in the Cup of Excellence competition.
For them, coffee is everything - growing up in the fields, they learned to taste coffee as children, when they consumed tortillas the traditional way: dipped in coffee.
Luis' first customer was Daisuke, they started their businesses at the same time and have been working together ever since. Luis attributes much of his success to Daisuke's help and knowledge, and believes he would not be where he is today without him.
Eudoro and Norma are husband and wife, who have been working together for 11 years in their own coffee farm. Norma is a systems engineer, and Eudoro grew up on the coffee plantations his father established a few decades ago.
Eudoro originally started working in corporate management, but when his father offered him a job he returned to live and work on the farm. At the time, coffee was a very prosperous business and the price of commercial coffee was relatively high, but in the previous 5 years the price of coffee had dropped significantly, threatening their livelihoods.
His father passed away in 2008, leaving him to take over and run the San José farm at the age of 27. As a result, Norma and Eudoro had to face the crisis alone. That’s when they started growing specialty coffee, and they've dedicated their lives to the highest quality ever since. They experiment with several varieties, the most important of which are Arabicos Caturra, Red Caturra and Yellow Caturra.