CORCASAN is the first cooperative founded in the Madríz department of Nicaragua, with its roots going back to 1978. CORCASAN is made up of 248 smallholder producers with an average farm size of two hectares of land. 66 of the members are women and all members are certified Organic. The cooperative has members in all municipalities of San Juan del Río Coco and has set themselves apart as a cooperative known for a high-quality product, producing clean coffee, and adhering to international Organic certification standards for the last fifteen years.
Most cooperative members represent family farms. These farms have traditionally been passed down through generations and the large farms of the past have been distributed into smaller parcels. Farm workers are usually the family members living on the farm, who remain connected with the farm and their land year-round. Producers’ proximity to their farms has facilitated the implementation of training and technical assistance to improve yields and quality.
CORCASAN has been fortunate to receive technical assistance from various parties. International NGO Catholic Relief Service has been training co-op members since 2012 and local exporter Expocamo has provided further training focused on quality since 2017. These trainings helped to combat coffee leaf rust using organic practices and to provide nutritional plans for families. Integrated programs maintain both the farm’s organic practices while improving income and livelihood security. Collaborative trainings strengthen the relationship between the co-op and its members.
CORCASAN has chosen to focus on producing specialty coffee and distinguish itself for quality in addition to earning certifications. This shift in focus is partly thanks to a new partnership with Expocamo. Francisco Valle, Expocamo’s general manager, has assisted the cooperative in selecting the highest quality lots to offer to roasters who appreciate both quality and dual certifications, connecting with clients who value this special combination of attributes.
With CORCASAN as the expert producer of quality certified coffee and Expocamo as the experienced exporter of specialty coffees from Nicaragua, Ally completes the chain as the importer working to open up opportunities for CORCASAN members and their families by moving their coffee forward to new markets. We have been working with both Expocamo and CORCASAN for several harvests and we look forward to continuing to expand these partnerships.