It has been some time since my last visit to coffee producers in Peru. In November/December I travelled to Jaen and San Ignacio in the North Oriental Jungle of Peru to visit several organisations. I was joined on my travels by my colleagues Regional Office Administrator, Andrea Miguel de Priego who works with me in Lima and Andrew Ridley, Credit and Services Manager who travelled over from head office to meet us.
Coffee continues to be the same crop, it has not changed very much itself, however, the needs of the farmers have expanded to face different challenges. The need of working capital is always there and is very related with the expansion of production and sales. Shared Interest has recently adapted its lending policy and we are now able to lend more to coffee producers in this area so it was great to meet some potential new customers.
We also had the opportunity to visit current customers Aprocassi and Cenfrocafe. Aprocassi was the first customer I established for Shared Interest so it was great to catch up with them. They are growing steadily and have interesting plans for expansion. I hope that Shared Interest may be able to help them with those plans. I was really impressed with Cenfrocafe who have continued to grow and improve their activities.
One of the most memorable parts of the trip was learning more about the cupping process. We tasted fantastic coffee during our trip, although I do not think our abilities as quality graders are well developed yet. Nevertheless, it was a fantastic experience and great to see all aspects of coffee production.
I hope to be able to tell you about lots of new coffee lending in the New Year.
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