Fazenda Divino Espírito Santo, located in the Tromba mountain range, in the city of Piatã, in the Chapada Diamantina region, started producing coffees when Michael and Patrícia moved there in 1993 from Salvador, becoming the first generation of coffee producers in the family. The couple, parents of three daughters, left the capital with the goal of exploring the black goal of the Chapada Diamantina mountains at 1350 meters of elevation. Both sought information by getting in touch with the locals who already worked in the area, and also through workshops and conventions, to learn the art of producing good coffee.
At first, despite the climactic conditions favoring the quality of the drink, the technical conditions and the machinery were practically inexistent, and the power grid didn’t reach the farm – this arrived only in 2015, before this the producers used solar power and a generator. As such, production depended on great effort and hard work from the entire family and several workers. They hulled small coffee lots by hand. Little by little, they saved up to buy a pulper, then a washer, and thus conditions improved, enabling a better production process.
Nowadays the farm has 10 hectares of coffee and and all necessary care for quality. The harvest is done selectively by apanhadeiras de café, women who pick bean by bean, in several stages so that only well-ripened beans are picked. Drying is closely monitored. Then the coffee is processed and warehoused according to established standards.
The centerpiece of success in production is the participation of the entire family, in all the stages of coffee production, from the beginning until today. The producers’ daughters, Milena (29), Letícia (23) and Cecília (13), since they were young, have lived on the farm and love it, as they love growing coffee and appreciating the drink. They help in the fields, where they have direct contact with the soil, thus deconstructing the erroneous colonial idea that only male children were able to continue the family business.
Coffee processing system:
The processing system is the wet method, pulped natural. After picking, the beans are pulped and spread on African beds for drying.
Concern for quality:
The concern for quality is present at all steps in coffee production. Seedlings are grown on the farm itself, the best being chosen for planting. The harvest is selective, only well-ripened beans are hand-picked by women. After picking, a second pass is done by hand checking whether any unripe beans have been accidentally picked. When the coffee is taken to the patio for drying, lots are separated by date and variety, and they are controlled using a humidity meter, identifying the correct moment to warehouse or process them.
The producers are also concerned about the environment and nature. They do not use chemical products and fertilize using manure from chickens and goats, coffee chaff, and the residue from pulping. The coffee fields have some trees called grevílea which provide shade, control wind, protect the soil with their leaves and also provide fertilization when these leaves decompose. The farm has a forest reserve on which hunting and logging are prohibited. Animals are always welcome; birds sing every morning and jacu birds visit every harvest.
Farm NameFAZENDA DIVINO ESPÍRITO SANTO
FarmerMICHAEL FREITAS DE ALCÂNTARA
Processing SystemPulped Natural