P.R. Coffee Roasters launches sustainability project
Puerto Rico Coffee Roasters on Thursday launched an awareness and social responsibility project dubbed “Sembrando el Bien,” (“Sowing the Good”) whose goal is to preserve and spare natural resources by developing sustainable agriculture to contribute to the island’s well being.
The campaign targets company employees, farmers and the community, especially coffee-drinkers, company officials said.
“As market leaders, we recognize that in addition to harvesting a quality product, our commitment is to the community. For this reason, ‘Sowing the Good’ has been developed to reaffirm this commitment, strengthening our environmental, social and economic awareness,” said Julio Bravo, vice president of operations for the company that produces Café Yaucono, Café Rico, Café Crema, Alto Grande, Café Encantos, Yaucono Selecto, Garrido Expreso, and Café Rioja, which represent 75 percent of Puerto Rico’s coffee producing volume.
The initiative arose from a concern over the social and environmental issues that significantly affect coffee production in Puerto Rico. The campaign focuses on four elements — land, community, progress and well being — which “are essential to conserving and protecting the coffee industry,” he said.
Founded in 2008, P.R. Coffee Roasters injects more than $15 million a year into the island’s coffee region, from which it purchases the beans for its products.
Through new farming projects in the pipeline, the company will provide solutions and tools, and will create a technology transfer infrastructure to benefit the coffee industry, working in tandem with the Agriculture Department.
Among the company’s initiatives is testing out high yielding coffee varieties that are tolerant to plagues and diseases that attack the farms. Once they’ve been tested, the varieties will be made available to sell to local coffee farmers.