Why Are We So Unique?
There are a number of reasons for this. Perhaps the single
most difference is where we are located. We literally opened up to the world a whole new specialty coffee region. We did this in an area that was deemed impossible by the experts in the famous Chiriquí province of Panama.
That by itself sets us apart from the majority. Another amazing fact is that we are only 2 people with $0 financing.
Then there is quality. Although our farms sit between 1000 m - 1200 m in altitude, our coffee has been Q-Graded at 87 points.
It is Not "Us and Them"
At Alvaro's Cafe, we do it all and therefore, there is no "us and them". Just the words "we have a relationship with the farmers" indicates separate entities. It can be a real challenge to see each other as 2 parties of equal value.
It is true that at the time of writing we are not in position to export. However, when the day comes we would prefer a relationship where there is no "us or them". We would be thrilled to see our "Alvaro's Café" logo in coffee shops or kiosks in cities in North America,
A great business model is the "Juan Valdez" organisation. That is real "Farmer Direct"
Small Is Big
Much of your Specialty Coffee comes from relatively small to very large farms. Many of these farmers are well organized to help them process and move their precious cargo for the benefit of many.
This is very important because all indications are that the demand for great coffee is on the increase. The problem is that Specialty Coffee crops are facing severe challenges which may bring serious decreases in production. What does that mean?
People like us are becoming more relevant. We set up shop in an extremely remote part of Panama that has always had the potential. to produce specialty coffee, but has never done it. We saw that and are doing something about it.
Our farms are no larger than 3.5 hectares at this time. Most people in the area have smaller parcels of land with their farms in deplorable conditions. We may be very small, but we are part of the bigger piece of the pie that has yet to be organized.