San Nicolas Antigua SPR de RI (SAN) is a coffee estate located in Chiapas, Mexico and has been operating for over 50 years. The coffee production is Organic and Bio Latina Certified. Sales are done through ECEX 2000, a company created by SAN and other coffee estates to commercialize coffee to international specialty markets.
Finca San Nicolas was established in 1880 by the Giesemann family. SAN is located in the Sierra Madre de Chiapas, 45km from Tapachula City. Today, this 274 hectare estate is managed by the family’s fourth generation. The farm’s coffee production area is 245 hectares and a separate 29 hectares is designated for a private reserve of medium and high altitude perennifolia forest. SAN is committed to producing organic, high quality and conservation coffee.
San Nicolas is part of the group of estates which partnered and formed ECEX 2000 (ECEX). ECEX is a 16 year old trading entity that provides marketing and logistics for 15 coffee estates in Chiapas. ECEX maintains a diversified portfolio of buyers such as: JBR Gourmet Foods, Community Coffee Co., Starbucks, Amcafe, and Gollücke & Rothfos. Recently, San Nicolas’s business strategy has been to grow sustainable and organic coffee for the specialty coffee market, directly export through ECEX and develop long term relationships with buyers. San Nicolas is certified Organic and Bio Latina.
SAN received VV financing in September 2008 in order to help cover harvest expenses. This credit line has been helping the grower adhere to conservation coffee standards and improve the quality that will translate into premium prices for its product.
VV Funded coffee estates and cooperatives in Chiapas have contributed to the reforestation and protection of more than 2974 hectares of diversified coffee farms in the reserve buffer-zones of the Sierra Madre de Chiapas. San Nicolas is an important model of agroforestry and conservation in an area of rich biodiversity. The area supports one of Mexico’s remaining High, Cloud and Coniferous forest fragments, a vegetation type that constitutes a CI priority in Mesoamerica. Sustainable management of SAN has supported the conservation of 157 bird species, 10 streams and two major rivers in the region. Investment in SAN will contribute to the consolidation of conservation corridors and expansion of the existing corridor formed by VV funded coffee estates. SAN has focused on the production of shade grown coffee, contributing to the preservation of the natural resources of the Tacana-Boqueron Terrestrial Priority Region 135 (El Tacana).
SAN implements environment-friendly wet and dry processing of coffee beans, and is planning to implement modern waste water treatment. Implemented best practices include the use of mechanical weed control and soil preservation activities. The farm is a model of agroforestry and organic production and doesn’t use any agrochemicals. During the last years, the farm has implemented social programs to improve workers’ infrastructure and conditions. Some additional environmental benefits resulting from the compliance with the conservation coffee practices to date include the following:
• An expansion of 274has of the conservation corridor area with shade canopy resulting from the
conservation and planting of native shade species on the coffee farm.
• Increases in forest agriculture production and preservation of remaining on-farm forest remnants.
• Preservation of natural vegetation buffer zone around all streams.
• Reduction in bird and mammal hunting
• Coffee cherry pulp diverted from local waterways
• Implementation of REDD practices
• Improvement in water and solid waste treatment systems
• Raising awareness of and implementing proper environmental practices