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Meet Exequiel Lopez. Exequiel is part of our farm coop and supplies us (and you!) with one of our premium microlot coffee beans "Saber".
Exequiel is the third out of 4 children. He completed elementary school in the community of el Zarzal and then he studied remotely At the Honduran institute of education by radio, obtaining his high school diploma.
He started with the planting of coffee after finishing his elementary school, in a 1.40 hectares of land he inherited from his father, where he planted 200 trees of the typica variety by obtaining the seeds from the grains that fell to the ground on his father's farm.
Later, Exequiel planted another 200 trees of the yellow catuai variety with seeds that he also obtained from his father's farm. Since then, he planted small plots with 500 and 1000 trees every year. With the profits he made from his first harvests he was able to pay his studies in high school and at the age of 19, he started the construction of his house. By then, Exequiel already had 14 thousand plants planted with coffee, producing around 15 to 19 quintals, which he pulped by hand at his father's wet mill. At 22, he built his own wet mill by buying a manual pulper, building a concrete pile and even got a mule to transport the coffee from his farm to his wet mill.
6 years later, he bought his first gasoline-based engine pulping machine and another plot of land where he used to grow basic grains and in which he later planted coffee. At 28, he started living with Delmi Cartagena, who was a little bit younger than him and already had a 3 year-old little girl named Delmi Estefany, from a previous relationship. Currently, Delmi Estefany is 10 years old and is in fourth Grade; Exequiel and Delmi had a boy named Antoni Exequiel, who is now 3 years old.
At 30, Exequiel bought a car and another plot of land of 1.40 hectares in the community of el Volcán and for the 2013 crop he harvested 114 quintals. Unfortunately, his farms were severely affected by the leaf rust as he had susceptible varieties such as pacas, caturra, catuai, bourbón and tipica; this represented a loss of 50% of his plantation, so Exequiel had to start planting again with more resistant varieties such as lempira and ihcafe 90.
Nowadays, his production rounds 150 quintals and in 2018 he was able to build a warehouse exclusively to store the coffee and also started the certification process with rainforest alliance. He has been selling all his production to the Co-op for four years.