Nicaragua Flor de Dalia Natural Fair Trade Organic
Located in Nicaragua’s Matagalpa department, Flor de Dalia is a farmer’s cooperative that Equator has been buying from for the past three years. The group was brought to our attention by a Catholic Relief Services’ Coffeelands initiative know as Blue Harvest. Blue Harvest, or Cosecha Azul, is a watershed improvement program designed to protect and restore sources of drinking water in coffee growing communities by promoting sustainable production.
When visiting Flor de Dalia earlier this year, we were not only impressed with their dedication to environmental improvement, but also their desire to elevate coffee quality. The co-op had recently constructed a shaded drying station, featuring raised tables for micro lots. They were experimenting with natural processing for the first time, with the hope of submitting their coffee to the Nicaragua Cup of Excellence competition. Unfortunately, due to political instability, this year’s competition was cancelled. As a result, Equator was able to purchase the entirety of this special lot. The coffees selected for this lot were from members who have higher elevation farms with large plantings of Caturra variety coffee.
Established in 2004 the Flor de Dalia is focused on a variety of crops including coffee, cocoa, and rice, as well as beekeeping. Members are provided with an assortment of services, including savings and credit plans, discounted goods for agricultural use, and personal consumption. The cooperative started with 211 members, 37% of them women, with 150 of the member base dedicated to coffee production. Gender inclusion is a critical part of the organizations mission as is its focus on organic farming practices.