Nelson Ramirez is altogether a different kind of farmer in Santa Barbara, having the biggest operation in the area and having the privilege of receiving a formal agronomy education. Originally from Copan, he comes from a smallholder lineage – his grandfather having been a small holder.
Nelson used to work for a company that, amongst other things, sold fertilizer. Now he wants to use his experience and connections not only to his own benefit as a full-time farmer, but also in helping other farmers in his community. He and his former business partners have come up with a fertilizer that emphasizes potassium, which he says helps fix nitrogen to coffee plants, making for healthier trees and a sweeter cup.
Our importing partner for this coffee, Collaborative Coffee Source, was introduced to Nelson in 2012 by their good friends and the owners of export company San Vicente. San Vicente is based in Peña Blanca, the closest city to almost all the farmers CCS works with in Honduras. San Vicente has been an invaluable partner to CCS, helping the development process of their relationships with the farmers with whom they work, introducing them to new potential partners, providing milling & logistic services, and actively working together with farmers on new strategies to improve farm-level practices to improve cup quality each year.