We are excited to share a new look for our Fedecocagua coffee range. Last year, we embarked on a new project to redesign our Fedecocagua coffee bags.
DRWakefield has been working with Fedecocagua for over twenty years. Fedecocagua was founded in 1969 when 17 small primary cooperatives and 7000 producers collaborated to form a secondary cooperative. Today there are 68 cooperatives involved and 23,500 producer members, making Fedecocagua the biggest exporter of coffee in Guatemala.
Our relationship with Fedecocagua is founded on the shared values of maximising benefits for coffee producers and delivering the best quality coffee to roasters. So, when we began looking into redesigning our Fedecocagua coffee bags, we knew we had to create something that would not only help each cooperative better market their coffee, but would also look great in everyone’s roasteries.
We source coffee from various Fedecocagua cooperatives scattered throughout Guatemala’s coffee-growing regions. In total we have ten Fedecocagua coffees in our range: Acatenango, Coatitlan, Coban, Cuchumatan, Montellano, Nueva Era, Peña Roja, El Pensativo, Todosanterita and Zacapa. These coffees are either grown by single cooperatives or are regional blends from multiple cooperatives.
Explore our range of Fedecocagua coffee on our website, and you’ll likely discover some varied cup profiles. However, as we found on our trip earlier this year, it’s not just the coffee that leaves a lingering aftertaste when visiting Guatemala. The richly vibrant cultures, verdant mountainous landscapes and warm and welcoming people are all at Guatemala’s heart. The ten cooperatives or regions in our Fedecocagua range are as distinct and eclectic as the coffees. So naturally, we wanted this vibrancy to be reflected in the design of the new bags.
New Coffee Bag Designs
When thinking about new designs for the Fedecocagua range at DRWakefield, we also asked ourselves, how do we create a suite of designs representing each coffee’s provenance while furthering our investment at origin?
The answer for us was simple – we chose to work with a designer based in Guatemala. Working in this way enabled us to collaborate with someone attuned to the country’s heritage whilst furthering our investment in the origin. For the Fedecocagua bag project, we worked with the talented designer Luis Pinto, who was introduced to us by a mutual friend. Luis grew up in Mexico but now lives in Guatemala City. His work is vibrant, colourful and expressive, perfect for the coffee bag designs we had in mind.
Working remotely with Luis, Fedecocagua and the DRWakefield team, who also have many years of experience in visiting the different regions of Guatemala, we created a range of bag designs that reflected each coffee’s uniqueness. The designs embrace and champion each cooperative’s identity and culture or the region’s environment and landscape.
The creative process helped us think about our Fedecocagua coffee’s distinctive attributes and enabled us to collaborate with the cooperative to deepen our relationship. Most importantly, however, the new branding created a way to support the cooperatives and producers further, helping to market and sell the coffee they grow. We are also sure the new bags will look at home in any roastery!
The DRWakefield Fedecocagua Coffee Range
The Acatenango volcano provides the ideal backdrop for the cooperative coffee of the same name. In front of the volcano, we can see traditional drying patios. The Acatenango volcano is part of the Sierra Madre de Chiapas, a mountain range crossing El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico and Honduras.
The Coatitlan cooperative is located next to Lake Atitlán, a body of water in a massive volcanic crater. The word ‘Atitlán’ means ‘between waters’, and around 100,000 Tzʼutujil people live around the lake, giving the area much indigenous culture. ‘Tzʼutujil’ also means ‘flowery place’ in the local Mam dialect, which is also reflected in the design.
The Cooperative Aroma del Buen Cafe Montellano are located in Yepocapa, Chimaltenango, a small town at the bottom of Volcan del Fuego. The area is home to many Kaqchikel people, whose traditional dress is vibrantly pink and purple.
The Nueva Era cooperative is located in Santa Rosa, where many Xinca communities exist. The forest and environment play a role In Xinca culture, and coffee is grown traditionally within a shaded forest environment. The hand-picked coffee in this area is treated with care and respect.
Peña Roja translates to ‘Red Rock’ and refers to the large overhanging rock for which the region in Huehuetenango is known. Cooperativa Agricola Integral Peña Roja smallholder members identify with the Ladino people, a mix of mestizo or Hispanicized peoples. They can sometimes be recognised by their traditional palm leaf hats.
The El Pensativo cooperative is in San Antonio Nejapa, close to the Acatenango range. In the local Kaqchikel dialect, El Pensativo translates to ‘thoughtful’, a value which is reflected in the design and the cooperative producer members.
The Todosanterita Cooperative is in Todos Santos, Huehuetenango. The population of Todos Santos is indigenous of Mayan descent. The cooperative members express their culture in different ways, such as their unique homemade outfits, culminating in the yearly All Saints festival which takes place on the 1st of November and includes traditional dances, music and the famous horse races.
Cuchumatan is a Mam word meaning ‘to bring together with force’. It is an area of very high altitude, often clouded and touched with snow. There is a poem famous in the region by 19th Century writer Juan Diéguez Olaverri titled A Los Cuchumatanes, which today is inscribed on a plaque at the Mirador at the top of the mountain.
Cobán comes from the Qʼeqchiʼ word meaning ‘between clouds’. The surrounding areas of Alta Verapaz are rich and lush with diverse flora and watersystems.
The Zacapa department is 112 km from Guatemala city. It is known for. both its rum production and beautiful traditional dress.
The new Fedecocagua coffee bags will start making their way into our offering this year, so please contact a Trader with any questions.
If you have one of the new Fedecocagua coffee bags in your roastery, why not post it and tag us on Instagram? We would love to hear your thoughts!