Fazenda da Cachoeira, so named by Francisco Junqueira, who loved the sound of the waterfall next to the farm, was given to him by his father as a wedding present. Years later, when he became old, Francisco Junqueira, also known as Chiquinho da Cachoeira, divided up the property and passed on the business part to two of his grandsons, Jose Pedro and Petronilha. Jose Pedro wanted to live in the Mata de Minas area, and therefore sold his share to his brother-in-law, who later gave up his interest in the property. In 2001, after the property went through repartitioning and several sales, a piece of the land was purchased by Claudio Junqueira Ferraz de Almeida, grandson of Petronilha and great-grandson of Chiquinho da Cachoeira. The new owner was in the civil construction business and was also a rural farmer involved in producing high-quality coffees and raising livestock. Claudio Junqueira named the property Fazenda Santa Rita. He proceeded to acquire more lands, expanded his area planted in coffee, and invested in equipment to handle the coffee after it was picked, including a washer, a pulper, a dryer, concrete drying patios, resting silos and special storage silos, and a machine to process the coffee. The farm is located in a mountainous region about 330 km from Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. The local climate is pleasant, with annual rainfall averaging 1,700 mm and altitude ranging between 900 and 1,200 meters. The soil is fertile and the climatic and topographic conditions are favorable for growing coffee. Several new varieties were planted with the assistance of an agricultural specialist. In addition to coffee, corn is also grown on the farm. Today Fazenda Santa Rita has an excellent infrastructure for producing and preparing high-quality coffees, as witnessed by the awards it has garnered in recent competitions in Carmo de Minas. It is managed by Cesar Augusto Ferraz Junqueira, who is also a farmer and cousin of Claudio Junqueira. He receives technical assistance in managing his crops from the agricultural experts at COCARIVE. Seedlings are planted following topographic contour lines with a view to preserving the soil. There are good roads leading to the property, since it is located next to Highway BR-460 and only 12 km from Carmo de Minas. Measures are being taken to protect some areas of the property that are home to native plants and wild animal species, including mountain springs, stream banks, and watercourses, in order to preserve the environment. These activities are monitored annually by UTZ-certified SGS or IMO audits and the Brazil Specialty Coffee Association (BSCA). The farms workforce consists of 50 employees on payroll, and this number may increase at harvest time. The social aspect, in terms of labor laws, is taken seriously. The workers and their families live in their own homes, which have adequate infrastructure; they also receive medical care and have a recreation area that they can enjoy. Their school-age children attend a municipal school.
System Selective harvesting removes only the ripe cherries. Because of the topography, it is done by hand, collecting the picked cherries in a cloth to keep them from touching the ground. The coffee is put through the mechanical washer the same day it is picked. Potable water is used. All the water used in the washers and pulpers is taken to settling tanks for recycling in order to reduce impact on the environment. The cherries are then pulped, taken to concrete drying patios, and spread out in thin layers. This procedure preserves the characteristics of the beverage. To ensure the high quality of the coffee, the drying is done carefully and slowly in the sun. When the ideal moisture content is reached, the coffee is taken to special wooden silos where they are held for 30 days. After this time, the lots are processed, bagged, and stocked at the Rio Verde Valle Regional Coffee Producers Cooperative (COCARIVE) in Carmo de Minas, ready for sale. All the residue from wet-processing the coffee, including the water and pulp, are treated and turned back into the soil in the form of biofertilizer. Commitment to Quality The property is farmed sustainably, with the goal of leaving an environment for future generations that is no worse, and hopefully better, than it is today. The owners are focused on quality from the time the seedlings are planted, selecting the best plants and the best soils with a view to producing sweet, full-bodied specialty coffees. Their goal is to constantly perfect the attributes of the coffees they produce. They attend meetings and presentations and visit other properties that share their technological know-how in the hope of making their product even better. Its ongoing commitment to quality earned Fazenda Santa Rita first place in the Brazil Natural Coffee Competition in 2005.
|Farm Name||Fazenda Santa Rita|
|Farmer/Rep.||Claudio Junqueira Ferraz De Almeida|
|Country||Brazil Pulped Naturals|
|Size (30kg boxes)||40|
|City||Carmo De Minas|
|Program||Brazil Pulped Naturals 2002|
|Coffee Growing Area||111.58|
|High bidders||Diedrich Coffee|