How do you get on with your work colleagues? You might occasionally go out for a coffee with them… maybe have a bite of lunch together… but it’s not often you get invited to their weddings.
Yet this really happens when our NESCAFÉ expert agronomists work with the coffee-growing farmers in Mexico – although we can’t always guarantee they stick to coffee when they’re celebrating! There’s a huge bond between the coffee growers and NESCAFÉ’s experts – the farming families put pictures of themselves with their expert friends on their mantlepieces, and count the days on the calendar until their next visit.
But this isn’t too surprising when you realise that these great farming partnerships have been formed over decades. We supported farmers through hard times like the Mexican coffee rust crisis of 2012-2015 where a fungus devastated coffee crops and threatened livelihoods. We distributed more than 37 million new disease-resistant coffee plantlets to over 33,000 farmers – and the new plants’ survival rate was around 90%. And we didn’t stop there – we spent the next 2-3 years helping farmers tend their new ‘babies’. Now farmers are reaping the rewards and yields have doubled in key regions like Chiapas and Veracruz.
Some growers we work with today are the children or grandchildren of the first farmers we helped. Coffee flows through the generations: “You could say we have brown blood!” says Alfredo, a third-generation coffee farmer in Veracruz.
So next time you make a cup of NESCAFÉ, remember the generations of hard work it’s taken for it to taste that good.