Exporters play a vital role in the coffee supply chain, specifically, getting coffee into the hands of buyers.

All year long we’ll be spotlighting the excellent exporter partners of ours starting with BICAFE in Guatemala. Get to know them in a bit in this short interview below and thanks to BICAFE for all their fantastic work!

Q: When did you start to work with CoE program?
A: It seems like yesterday. Time flies and we had been wanting to become the CoE Exporter for quite some time.  I think 2022 will be our 4th year and hope we can continue to do it for 10 more years.

Q: How has your experience been with the logistics process?
A: There are a couple of days when you say: Why do I keep doing this? But as time has gone by, we have grown to love CoE. It’s a great way to get to know new people.

Q: What is one of the challenges of being a CoE exporter?
A: Many auction winners are new to importing beans directly to their country. The entire process can be very time-consuming and stressful because new rules keep popping up as you advance in the process.

Q: What is the best part of being a CoE exporter?
A: The best part is helping producers to understand that they need to have a commercial strategy to sell their best coffees. There are experts and repeat winners who have the system all dialed in.  But when you receive a whole family including grandparents at the mill when they arrive to pick up their check, it is ultra fulfilling.

Q: What have you learned about specialty coffee working with producers and buyers?
A: That very often the poor exporter is ignored in the supply chain! I think we are vital in the supply and often try to convince everyone that if we all respect each other in all the ways possible we can really become sustainable. All of us.