Not long ago, specialty coffee and interesting sensorial cup profile was just a talk from faraway lands. It was in this time that Mr. Carlos Sérgio Sanglard decided not even to invest in specialty, but also in sustainable production. “I believe that what is good for the land, will be good for the health of my colleagues and for the people who will drink my coffee”, explains Sanglard.
In that time, his neighbors did not believe in his production strategy but the rewards came fast with several quality contests prizes. The special care and attention with the coffee production in his property has led to the 1st place at Cup of Excellence (COE) in 2003; 4th place at COE 2006; 19th place at COE 2009 and the 2nd place at COE 2010.
Everything started back then in 1988 when he purchased a small lot of 7 hectares in Araponga, small town of Minas Gerais state. Called as Serra do Boné, his dream was producing great coffee harmless for everyone: workers, customers and the Mother Nature. The altitude of 1200 meters and a rich soil helped him to produce excellent coffee, however, his special care in post-harvest made the difference.
Techniques of washing and pulping processes were adopted, the harvest was, and it still is dried in suspended patios. With the success and the financial awards, he purchased more lands and now his plants lay on 87 hectares in complete harmony with the environment. Mr. Sanglard commitment to conservation and preserved native forest guarantees a diverse biome that enriches his farming practices.
The year of 2003 was the exact time when Bourbon Specialty Coffees started making business with Mr. Sanglard and changed the region’s destiny when it comes to great coffee. Bourbon’s intense work via local partners straightened relations with farmers who have potential and wish to improve.
Since then, Araponga became one of the regions pioneers in specialty coffee production and now it can be considered as the specialty corner of Minas Gerais state. And everything started with Serra do Boné and Mr. Sanglard’s dream. “Who is the crazy one now? Not me.”, smiles.
What you should know about Araponga:
Minas Gerais state (where Araponga region is located) is so big that the whole Spain would fit within its borders. The vast territory can accommodate a diverse ecosystem, which can vary from steep mountains to long flat areas that make possible mechanization in coffee farms. Cerrado de Minas, Chapada, Sul de Minas are some of these different regions, but this story is about Matas de Minas and its work dedicated to specialty coffee.
Coffee is so important for the region, in Araponga surroundings, that it generates 75 thousand direct jobs and 156 thousand indirect jobs in this market. In a constant search for better prices, growers in this region do a great handcrafted work and techniques resulted in high standard beans. The nuance and flavors diversity is frequently recognized and really appreciated in national and international quality contests.
“When I take care of nature, nature will take care of my coffee and my people.” – Carlos Sérgio Sanglard