In 1954 Mariana de Carvalho Junqueira inherited this property from her parents, who also bequeathed to her a love for growing coffee. She expanded the cultivated area and invested in equipment needed for processing the coffee after it was picked. Rancho Sao Benedito is surrounded by properties belonging to other family members. Together, this family group, the mother and her four children, grow coffees of the highest quality. As more land has been added, more areas have been planted in coffee. A common area is used for processing, thus reducing consumption of water and energy, conserving natural resources, and making the process more sustainable. The certified seedlings are planted along topographic contour lines with a view to preserving the soil. Rancho Sao Benedito is managed by Marcio Heleno de Carvalho Junqueira, one of Marianas sons, who is also responsible for the other farms. He is constantly guided by the experience of the matriarch and he receives technical guidance on cultivation matters from agricultural experts at Procoffee Foundation, Minas Gerais Extension Services (EMATER), and Rio Verde Valle Regional Coffee Producers Cooperative (COCARIVE). In addition to growing coffee, the farm raises Mangalarga Marchador horses. The farm has 20 employees on payroll, and this number is increased several times over at harvest time. The property borders on urban streets, where its employees have their own homes. They also receive medical care and have access to public schools and a recreation area. All workers use personal protection equipment when necessary.
System The search for quality begins with the selection of seedlings and varieties. Investing in the quality of its product, Rancho Sao Benedito has a washer, pulper, suspended concrete drying patios, a vertical dryer for natural coffee, a rotating dryer, and special silos for pulped natural coffee. The picked coffee cherries are taken to the processing center, where they are washed and pulped. Next, the beans are carried to the patios and suspended patios, where they are dried in the sun. Once they reach ideal moisture content, they are transported to special silos where they are held for several days until they are processed and bagged for storage at the Rio Verde Valle Regional Coffee Producers Cooperative (COCARIVE), where they will be sold. Commitment to Quality The owners philosophy places high value on socio-environmental responsibility and personal commitment to the excellence of their product. As a result, their coffees have already been exported to several countries and have garnered the following awards: Finalist, Cup of Excellence competition, Brazil Specialty Coffee Association (BSCA), 2002, 2003, 2006, 2008, and 2009, ranking twice in 9th place 2nd place, Minas Gerais Extension Services (EMATER-MG), 2005, and one of 13 finalists in 2006 3rd place, Brazilian Coffee Industry Association (ABIC), 2005 10th place, Illycaffe, 2007-2008, and 9th place, 2008-2009 Rancho Sao Benedito and the other properties belonging to the family group are certified by the Minas Gerais State Coffee Certification Program Certifica Minas and are in the final stages of implementing a UTZ-certified socio-environmental management system.
|Farm Name||Rancho São Benedito|
|Farmer/Rep.||Mariana De Carvalho Junqueira|
|Country||Brazil Pulped Naturals|
|Size (30kg boxes)||26|
|Program||Brazil Pulped Naturals 2002|
|Coffee Growing Area||35|
|High bidders||S. Ishimitsu & Co., Ltd.|