Young coffee growers, an essential part of sustainability of coffee farming in Colombia
The Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC), the institution to which Buencafé belongs, brought together 113 young coffee growers from 22 departments of Colombia, to address crucial issues of sustainability of their activity in the First Young Coffee Growers Congress, JoCa, 2017.
This meeting addressed mainly the issue of generational change, seeking to encourage new generations to stay in the countryside and continue their families’ production activity.
“For the FNC, meeting young people has a great significance, because not only the present but the future of Colombian and global coffee farming depend on them”, Roberto Vélez, the FNC CEO, said.
At the same time, the freeze-dried coffee factory Buencafé had the opportunity to tell the audience about the great significance of their farming activity, whose product is a paramount input to our company, which adds value to the coffee they produce.
The attendees also took the most of this space to share experiences and knowledge, create cooperation networks and learn in depth about the strength of the coffee institutions that support their work.
Young coffee growers represent a priority segment to the FNC’s value strategy: Generational integration, the farm as a business, innovation, and entrepreneurship are some of the projects to be developed at national level with people in the coffee sector.
“With this meeting, we hope to know the elements that will allow coffee growers to find a social and economic option in coffee, so they can develop a prosperous life project in the countryside”, Vélez noted.
All the coffee regions were present at JoCa 2017
This first version of the Young Coffee Growers Congress (JoCa), which took place in the Manuel Mejia Foundation (academic branch of the FNC) in Chinchiná, Caldas, was attended by six delegates per coffee department, half men and half women, as well as three representatives of regions such as Caquetá, Meta, Casanare, Putumayo, and Chocó, all between 16 and 25 years old and chosen by
the Departmental Committees through application forms.
With a varied agenda, the attendees were able to learn in depth about the coffee institutions and their services. And through the coffee route, they focused on the main technical aspects of farming and commercialization, both in the national and international market.
One of the crucial moments of this meeting was the exchange of experiences, confirming the leadership that many of these young coffee growers already have in their communities.
Experts agreed that the use of new technologies and recognition of young coffee growers’ contributions and ideas by their own families play an important role in generational integration.