angel barrera | 2016-04-04
It's been already over three years that I've been buying coffee for Belco. Over three years fighting for what have always been our dream, from the beginning of Belco as from the moment I was on board: improving the quality of coffee in our market. Three years fighting for keeping that Don Quixote’s oneiric & adventurous spirit that has always been with us.
Letting a bit of Sancho's common sense coming in, just to get wiser & stronger in what we do.
Looking back in these past three years, we have accomplished a lot of goals. Goals for which we are extremely proud, and certainly goals which makes you, producers and roasters partners, also be proud. You, producers, having put your coffees at same level as wine... coming from producing a mere commodity. You, roasters, have created the market for that new wine... fighting against a market thirsty of just low prices and pirates looking to get them anything and whatever to fulfill their demands.
And yet, this is just the beginning of this quest for good quality coffee. This is as good as it gets. We all have huge responsibilities on our shoulders for the future.
We do always have breaking points, life stories that make us keeping fighting harder & kicking stronger every day. Let me tell you a story that happened to me during this year's trip to Central America, when I was in Chiriquí, Panama.
Don Chalo, a Panamanian farmer, was giving up with coffee, after years of losing money due to international low prices. He decided to start switching his farm to cattle little by little. He came to the cupping our exporter in Panama previewed for us. He was curious about it and he's always happy to meet new people. This was going to be the first time he’d ever cup a coffee. He asked me if his coffee was good. Out of a table of 10 cups, his 3 samples were scoring over 87, which was impressive considering how fresh & unsorted still they were. So I said no, I didn't consider his coffees were good but extraordinary, and that he should continue producing them instead of switching to cattle. He smiled and told me, that then, we might be able to do something.
We would be pleased to have you at Belco this year, to introduce you at "vive voix", our arrivals from Central America & Ethiopia. So we hope you can make it to Bordeaux on this April first. Otherwise, count on our sampling from their arrival ;)
Ángel, for the Belco team