Today we visited Coopedota, a cooperative of local coffee farmers. Coopedota helps small farmers by selling their unprocessed coffee. For smaller companies, a cooperative is helpful because it helps them be competitive in a market against the larger coffee farms. It also gives the smaller farms benefits when they produce higher quality coffee. Coopedota has a special grading system for the coffee that they receive that gives farmers more money when they purer coffee. Even though it gives some farmers benefits, cooperatives can limit some small coffee companies. If a company cannot meet any of the quality standards, it is difficult for it to advance as a company because it is tied down by the cooperative.
Without the cooperative, it would be very difficult for small coffee farmers to compete with the large coffee growing companies. Without the cooperative, these companies would have no chance in the market, and there would be far fewer coffee farmers in the community.
Café Privilegios is particularly important to the community because they do a lot of community outreach. For example, there is a school in the area that focuses particularly on teaching the children the coffee trade so they can go into the coffee business when they are older. They also help out small farms by giving them agricultural products to make their farms better and more productive.