Origin Story: Honduras UNIOCAFÉ

UNIOCAFÉ is a producer association in the Ocotepeque region of Western Honduras, and its umbrella organization supports 28 producer groups, representing more than 1,000 coffee farmers.

We’re excited to have purchased from the Youth Committee of the Unión de Organizaciones Ocotepecanas de Café (UNIOCAFE) who are participating in the Coffee Kids Program. UNIOCAFE is a producer association in the Ocotepeque region of Western Honduras, and its umbrella organization supports 28 producer groups, representing more than 1,000 coffee farmers. 

Since 2007, UNIOCAFE has invested in its producer network by providing training, financing and access to coffee buyers. In 2016, UNIOCAFE expanded its programs to focus on empowering youth, promoting gender equity and addressing climate change — and were identified as an ideal group for the Coffee Kids program to team with. Currently, UNIOCAFE provides young producers with best-practices training in coffee cultivation, cupping and coffee quality, as well as processing and preparation for export. At the same time, the youth are learning how to develop strong organizational and business skills. 

Photo Courtesy of Inter America Coffee

The Coffee Kids Program

Coffee Kids is a program of the coffee nonprofit foundation Hanns R. Neumann Stiftung (HRNS), which has been working with farmer associations in the Trifino region of Central America—the shared border of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. Its goal is to awaken the entrepreneurial spirit in young farmers, to encourage them to believe in themselves and to help ensure better livelihoods for them and their families.

Through Rural Business Workshops, Coffee Kids provides not only agronomy and quality-control training, but also business mentoring and access to financing. Globally (in Trifinio, Colombia and Tanzania), Coffee Kids now includes more than 250 young people and strongly believes that if the creativity, innovation and passion of young people is supported, they'll have the capacity to adapt to the challenges ahead.

Pedro Armando Pineda, age twenty, joined the Coffee Kids Business Workshop in 2016. With the training he received and the funding he was awarded, Pedro started a small agricultural business to supplement his coffee farming. “I started my business just about five months ago with my brother. I sell mostly coffee related products like fertilizer, fungicides, seeds, and pruning tools,” Pedro explained. “Sales have increased little by little as more and more people hear about my business and develop trust in my products. It helps that I am the only business in my small community.” Because of The Coffee Kids Program and community of supporters, Pedro has been empowered to continue coffee farming in his community and make a steady, year-round income.

“I just want to express my gratitude for the program. It helped me immensely. I would love to someday have my very own chain of stores.”

Photo Courtesy of Inter America Coffee

Since 2015, the Coffee Kids program is part of the Hamburg based Hanns R. Neumann Stiftung (HRNS). Coffee Kids became a programmatic frontrunner in the foundation’s youth approach. Since HRNS took over Coffee Kids, the program has worked with 700+ youths in Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, and Tanzania. To meet the needs of their growing community of next generation coffee farmers in the best way possible, they're looking inward with an internal review to understand and further develop this successful program. For a coffee roaster, to see this immense success of a program focused on the future of coffee and its youth, has given Ferris a great sense of pride in how and where we source. We hope to continue to bring coffees like this to you and share the stories from which they came in the hopes to bridge the connection from farm to roaster to cup.

Coffee Bean Details

  • Region: Ocotepeque region of Western Honduras
  • Growing Altitude: 1,200–1,600 masl
  • Varietals: Catimore, Caturra, Costa Rica, Parainema, Lempira, Catuai Rojo, Pacamara
  • Harvest Period: November - March
  • Milling Process: Washed
  • Aroma: Sweet, Herbal
  • Body: Silky
  • Acidity: Citrus
  • Tastings Notes: Apple, Cider, Caramel