Anastacio Benitez Diaz

Farm and Producer Info  

 Farm Name: Las Granadillas   Farm year founded: 1996  Entire property hectares: 17.61

 Farm Altitude: 1,850   Harvest season months: January to March  Plant age: 6 to 8 years in average 

Ripe cherry colour: Red  Coffee Grade: 85% in Average Cupping flavours: Tropical Fruits, Chocolate

Average annual rain fall: 1,100 to 1,350 M  Relative humidity: 70.5% Soil Type: Clayey Soils

Farm cleaning methods: Machete  Amount of temporary employees hired for harvest season: 50

Coffee Varieties:  Bourbon, Lempira, IHCAFÉ 90, Red Catuaí, Catimor, Pacas

Farmer schooling level: 4th Grade

Wife Name: Maria Araceli Benitez Lopez

Children: Breily Benitez(17), Elsi Johani Benitez (15), Denilson Bentez (13), Isela Benitez

 History

ANASTACIO IS A PRODUCER FROM THE COMMUNITY OF GUALDALLA, A VERY HUMBLE VILLAGE LOCATED IN SAN SEBASTIAN, LEMPIRA; HOMETOWN OF HIS PARENTS, MR. DONALDO BENITEZ PASCUAL AND MRS. BERNARDINA DIAZ. ANASTACIO LIVED UP HIS FIRST 6 YEARS THERE UNTIL HIS PARENTS DECIDED TO MOVE TO SAN SEBASTIAN SO HE COULD ATTEND SCHOOL; THREE YEARS LATER THE FAMILY HAD TO MOVE ONCE AGAIN, THIS TIME TO THE COMMUNITY OF PLAN DEL LIMON,

 CARRIZALITO, FROM WHERE HE HAD TO TRAVEL SEVERAL KILOMETERS TO GET TO SCHOOL IN THE COMMUNITY OF AGUA FRIA, WHICH HE ATTENDED UNTIL FOURTH GRADE AS HE DROPPED OUT OF SCHOOL AND DECIDED TO WORK NEXT TO HIS FATHER IN THE CULTIVATION OF BASIC GRAINS. FIVE YEARS LATER HIS MOTHER DECIDED TO BUILD THEIR OWN HOUSE IN THE COMMUNITY OF EL REMOLINO, AND TO HELP HER, ANASTACIO, WHO WAS ONLY 15 AT THE MOMENT, STARTED TO TRAVEL WITH HIS FRIENDS DURING THE COFFEE HARVESTING SEASONS TO CUT COFFEE IN SAN MARCOS, OCOTEPEQUE AND CORQUIN, COPAN, WHERE THEY EARNED BETTER SALARIES.

ONE DAY ON HIS WAY HOME FROM CORQUIN HE BROUGHT AROUND TWO POUNDS OF COFFEE SEEDS TO MAKE A NURSERY, WHICH HE PLANTED ON A HALF-HECTARE IN AN AREA CALLED THE IZOTE. IN 1998 HE HARVESTED THE FIRST CHERRIES FROM HIS FARM AND SOLD THEM BY GALLON TO MR. JUAN CARLOS PASCUAL AND TO MARCO TULIO RAMIREZ, INTERMEDIARIES FROM THE COMMUNITY, MAKING LPS. 800.00 (AROUND $ 59.00 AT THAT TIME) WHICH HE INVESTED IN FERTILIZERS FOR THE FARM AND TO CONTINUE EXPANDING THE LAND UNTIL HE COMPLETED THE ENTIRE HECTARE. IN 2001 HE DECIDED TO RENT A PULPING MACHINE, SO HE COULD LATER FERMENT THE COFFEE IN POLYETHYLENE BAGS, WASHED IT IN BASKETS AND DRIED IT IN POLYETHYLENE AWNINGS. SINCE THEN HE PROCESSES HIS COFFEE TO SELL IT IN DRY PARCHMENT. IN THE FOLLOWING YEARS HE CONTINUED PLANTING COFFEE IN A SMALL PIECE OF LAND CALLED LOS AGUACATES.

IN APRIL 2008 ANASTACIO DECIDED TO IMMIGRATE TO THE UNITED STATES, SEARCHING FOR BETTER OPPORTUNITIES AND WITH THE PURPOSE OF IMPROVING THE LIVING CONDITIONS OF HIS FAMILY, AS AT THAT TIME HE HAD MARRIED WITH MARIA ARACELI BENITEZ LOPEZ AND STARTED TO GROW THEIR FAMILY; SO HE AND HIS BROTHER-IN-LAW TRAVELED ILLEGALLY HOPING TO GET THERE SAFELY. AFTER A TOUGH 22-DAY TRIP AND GETTING THROUGH INNUMERABLE TERRIBLE SITUATIONS, THEY MANAGED TO GET TO VIRGINIA, WHERE HIS OTHER BROTHER-IN-LAW WAS WAITING FOR THEM. AFTER A BRIEF REST OF A COUPLE OF HOURS FROM HIS ARRIVAL, HE WENT OUT TO THE CITY HOPING TO FIND A JOB AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE, NO MATTER WHAT KIND OF JOB IT COULD BE. INCREDIBLY, THANKS GOD HE SAYS, HE FOUND A JOB THAT SAME AFTERNOON IN A PAKISTANI RESTAURANT, AS A VEGETABLE AND MEAT CHOPPER, WHERE HE WAS PAID $ 50.00 PER DAY FOR 12 HOURS OF WORK, WHICH IT WASN’T MUCH, BUT FOR A NEWCOMER WITHOUT A PENNY ON HIS POCKET, IT WAS A MIRACLE. MONTHS LATER, HE LEFT THE PAKISTANI RESTAURANT AND LOOKED FOR OTHER JOB OPTIONS WITH A BETTER SALARY SO HE COULD BE ABLE TO PAY FOR HIS TRAVEL EXPENSES, DEBTS AND THOUSANDS OF NEEDS THAT HIS FAMILY IN HONDURAS WAS GOING THROUGH AT THE TIME. TRIED LUCK IN A CHAIN OF AMERICAN RESTAURANTS WHERE HE QUICKLY BECAME A KITCHEN ASSISTANT AND DESPITE THE GREAT FAMILY ATMOSPHERE AND GOOD TREATMENT RECEIVED THERE, HIS SALARY ONLY REACHED $ 5.00 PER HOUR, AN AMOUNT THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH TO MEET HIS NEEDS, SO HE DECIDED TO RETURN TO HONDURAS AFTER 22 MONTHS OF HARD WORK. HE CONVINCED HIMSELF TO KEEP TRYING BY ALL MEANS TO EXPAND HIS FARM AND KEEP CULTIVATING MORE COFFEE. TODAY, ANASTACIO, HIS PARENTS AND BROTHERS ARE ENGAGED IN THE PRODUCTION AND TRADING OF COFFEE, WHICH NOW SUMS UP 14.79 HECTARES OF PRODUCTION. HE AND HIS FAMILY CURRENTLY LIVE IN EL REMOLINO, A SMALL VILLAGE IN THE AGUA FRIA COMMUNITY IN LEMPIRA.


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