The Coffee Growers Association of Oaxaca, Mexico.
The Coordinadora Estatal de Productores de Café de Oaxaca (CEPCO) was established in 1989.
CEPCO was formed by bringing together various organizations representing small growers from different regions of the state of Oaxaca.
At present, CEPCO is composed of 34 regional and community organizations.
Because one of our objectives from the start was to sell coffee directly at national and international levels, in 1990 our partners formed the Agricultural Marketing Agency of the State of Oaxaca Inc. (Comercializadora Agropecuaria del Estado de Oaxaca S.A. de C.V,, CAEO).
As an alternative to the protracted stages of price crises for our product, since 1993 we started to promote the production, processing and marketing of organic and sustainable coffee.
Faced with the latest "great price crash," the most recent strategy implemented by CEPCO to achieve market success has been to differentiate its coffee, presenting it as a total-quality product based on the combination of a number of concepts, such as certification as organic, ecologically friendly, shade grown, bird-friendly, and fair trade.
Independent coffee-growers' organizations have continually struggled to get the Mexican government to understand that their policies towards the smallholder coffee sector have not been adequate, since they have been based on the assumption that small farmers are not economically viable.
The Coffee Growers Association of Oaxaca is the largest network of small coffee farmers in Mexico.
Certified Organic Shade-Grown Fair Trade Specialty Gourmet Mexican Coffee
Coffee is a shade tolerant shrub which traditionally grows beneath a canopy of native forest trees. This protective canopy provides a habitat for numerous birds, animals and beneficial insects, all reducing the need for fertilizers. While shaded trees produce fewer beans, they are richer in nutrients and sugars. The result is a coffee of excellent quality with highly concentrated flavors. This coffee is grown under native trees and therefore contributes to protect the natural habitats and the tropical forests. Shade grown coffee plantations play a key role in the conservation of migratory birds that have found a sanctuary in their forest-like environment.
Wholesale volumes farm-direct from small-scale coffee growers/communities
Small-scale: 90% of CEPCO's farmers own less than 2 hectares (approx. 5 acres)
Co-operatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity and solidarity. Co-operative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility and caring for others.