Recently, due to a low harvest by our partners at Fondo Paez, we began increasing our purchases of coffee from COSURCA for our Colombian medium-roasted coffee. We have been working with COSURCA’s exporting arm for quite some time and the Co-op Coffees crew has visited them frequently. Since we are now working with them buying more of their excellent coffee, we wanted to share their story with you all.
The Cooperativa del Sur del Cauca (COSURCA) was legally chartered on March 12, 1993. The organization based in Cauca, Colombia is the result of the hard work of small-scale coffee farmer communities and cooperation promoted by the United Nations and the National and Departmental Government. The scope of operations of COSURCA stretches from the Central to the South Massif region of the department of Cauca. In these regions COSURCA links together eleven small-scale producer organizations in two municipalities with 1,423 families among which there are non-indigenous, indigenous, and African-descended communities. As such COSURCA is an incredibly diverse co-op representing the collective interests of many.
COSURCA is a second-level cooperative made up of eleven smaller community-based farmer co-ops. The cooperative was created to unite socioeconomic, ethical-political, historical-cultural and environmental efforts, within the framework of the economy of solidarity. Through agroecological production, agribusiness, marketing and responsible consumption they assist farmers in organic production techniques, organic certification, and collective marketing. Intergenerational dialogue, gender equity, and the recovery of collective memory are staples in the co-op’s mission to promote autonomy and freedom for farmer communities that care for their biocultural heritage and build territorial peace and a good living.
By 2023 COSURCA aims to be recognized as a benchmark cooperative for the construction of agroecological production processes and ethical marketing through the concept and practice of fair trade. The defense of the land, the care of natural assets, and the conservation of food sovereignty play key roles in the future plans of the organization.The inclusion of young people and women in cooperative leadership and respect for diversity with dialogue between all of their farmer partners remain critical focuses in their path forward.