El Salvador: Casa de la Tia Nena

During our trip to Guatemala, we came in contact with Rodolfo, a finca owner in El Salvador close to Santa Ana who is part of the organization called Casa de la Tia Nena. He requested that we come down to visit his family's finca (camp). It was a great experience as we learned the coffee processes in El Salvador. Their farm/beneficio is much larger than the one we work with in Santa Maria. Rodolfo is incredibly hospitable and very willing to show us around. We learned a lot from both him and his land. Here are a few pictures from our trip...

The first image is of unripe coffee drying (with the cherries still on the bean) on the patio of Rodolfo's brother-in-law. When they sort the ripe coffee cherries from the unripe coffee, they keep the unripe cherries to use for themselves and dry them on patios around their land.

The second image is of a coffee tree nursery. Notice how good these seedlings look.

The third image is of the bags of coffee cherries that the pickers picked. Imagine carrying one of those on your back up a huge hill!

The fourth image is of Rodolfo weighing the bags of cherries that have been picked by his pickers. When Rodolfo took us around his land he had us walk up the mountains like the pickers do. We, however, didn't have 100 lbs of coffee strapped to our backs. The agility, strength, and determination of these pickers are incredible. I'm fairly in shape, and I was huffing, puffing and falling all over the place.

The fourth image is of their beneficio (wet mill). This is a large scale beneficio. The one we are constructing in Santa Maria will not be this large.

The fifth image is of Rodolfo giving Les some green samples of his coffee (these beans are not roasted) to take back for Vienna Coffee to sample roast. Notice in the background that they have a large warehouse full of coffee ready to be shipped to different roasters around the country.

Like I mentioned before, the trip was very informative. We hope to continue the relationship with Rodolfo, and see if we can help each other in the future.