COMUCAP (Asociación Coordinadora de Mujeres Campesinas de La Paz) is a women’s cooperative located in southwestern Honduras, in the Marcala growing region. The association collectively owns over 100 hectares of farm land, as well as a wet mill, drying patios, cupping and roasting rooms, and an organic compost production facility. Thanks to the success of the association, many of the members have been able to purchase their own land where they cultivate additional coffee and other crops.
When we visited the co-op in the winter of 2016, we were very impressed to see how far the women had come in building the infrastructure needed to produce high quality coffee, as well as other unique products. The association also grows aloe vera, in the cooler, higher-elevation areas that are not suitable for coffee. The group uses the aloe vera to produce an assortment of products ranging from soap to beverages for domestic distribution.
In the past year, the group provided funding for a young woman to become a trained coffee taster. Previously the association employed an outside cupper to offer feedback on coffee quality. Now they have one of their own to focus on the sensory evaluation needed to improve quality. The group is beginning to work on variety separation, a project which will be easier to develop now that they have their own in-house cupping talent.