On the farm: Guatemala El Cintular
Red Star Roasters have been buying coffee from Finca El Triunfo in Guatemala for several years, dedicated to building a long-term relationship with our partners.
Geographically, it is located in the municipality of Pueblo Nuevo Viñas in the state of Santa Rosa in south west Guatemala.
Finca El Triunfo has been farming coffee for 130 years and is currently run by don Gregorio Padilla, a youthful 75 year old who is grandson to the farm’s founder, Faustino Padilla. Originally known under a different name, the farm was 5000 hectares (approx. 5000 soccer fields) in size but has since been subdivided and had parts sold off, as the passage of over a century would sometimes require.
Today it is 700 hectares in size, divided into many different plots growing many different varietials. It is a beautiful terroir for coffee, ranging from 900 to 1800masl, a short 50km away from the pacific ocean in a sub tropical rainforest that has grown around an extinct volcano.
One division of the farm is known as El Cintular, which is a staple component in Red Star’s Signature blend. Crop after crop, year after year, this coffee is produced to a wonderfully high standard and we are always so impressed and happy to include it in our blend.
At the farm’s establishment, don Faustino Padilla was devoted to planting trees and graced his farm with over 100 different species of tree, which now act as home to all kinds of wildlife – at least 28 species of bird, other small arboreal creatures and even jaguars and big cats who are drawn towards the shade and water springs inside the farm.
Six years ago, the farm started working with TG-LAB – a research and development lab that is committed to improving traceability and sustainability practices in Guatemalan coffee farming. Beginning at this time, Finca El Triunfo renewed 70% of its trees, introduced new varieties with traits such as rust resistance and undertook major commitments to nursery.
Currently, the farm has an experimental plot and nursery with over 280,000 trees, in total comprising 23 varietals. Combined with practices such as using a compost-tea made on the farm, removing the use of herbicides, soil fertilisation based on the analysis of individual micro-plots of soil at different stages of the harvest cycle, and an increasing commitment to agro-forestry, the farm is firmly on the front-foot regarding sustainability and is working as much as possible to ensure its own prosperity in the face of the current challenges – climatic and otherwise.
As far as we are concerned, this is great news as we look forward to each new crop from this wonderful farm.