The COMSA Bee Project

Our mission since 2007 has been to connect growers, roasters (us), and you (the faithful coffee drinker) through our quality coffee and commitment to stewardship.  

Flowering of the coffee plant - provided by FT USA

Flowering of the coffee plant - provided by FT USA

In 2012, when we were discussing how it would look to see our stewardship commitment grow, it was an easy choice to bring this full circle and partner with coffee growers.  The connection with Fair Trade USA brought us to the Bee Project with COMSA co-op in Honduras.  With 2 promotional runs, and the help of our faithful coffee drinkers, One Village Coffee was able to bring 54 bee colonies to 44 families in 2013.  The project continued in 2014, bringing a total of 86 beehives and 34 families completing a second round of training.

Training at the COMSA co-op - Picture provided by FT USA

Training at the COMSA co-op - Picture provided by FT USA

This project was beneficial in many ways, especially when the COMSA coffee farms were hit with coffee rust, a blight that destroys the coffee plant, in 2012.   There was no denying that we at One Village Coffee purchase a lot of coffee from this co-op, as we valued our relationship with the farmers. Once the COMSA co-op identified its needs, it was a no-brainer as “Bee’s improve coffee berry ripening and uniformity with their pollination and they can be easily maintained by family members, but most of all, bee products improve family nutrition.” (FT USA)

Honey Comb - Picture provided by FT USA

Honey Comb - Picture provided by FT USA

 The outcomes of this project included the following:. 

  1. Information was distributed on the significance of conservation activities that do not destroy the environment. 
  2. Beehives were built, honey was collected, and recipes were added for the use of medicinal and nutritional purposes. “It is estimated that each hive will produce 10-15 kg of honey a year.” (FT USA)  
  3. Training was provided in “Bee biology and behavior, beekeeping equipment, bee and hive management, harvesting & handling and the marketing of honey”.
Beehive location in the Forrest - Picture provided by FT USA

Beehive location in the Forrest - Picture provided by FT USA

Our Licensed Q Grader, Woody, had the privilege of trekking down to the COMSA Co-op in early March of this year.  

"Meeting with and talking to Sonia Vasquez was a highlight of my trip. Sonia is very passionate about all things COMSA, especially organic farming and Fair Trade. Little did I know, this amazing woman would be spending the rest of the trip with us. She cupped coffees, drove us to farms and mills, and shared her knowledge all week long. As one of the main persons responsible for the COMSA Bee Project, Sonia took the time to explain how the project helped the farms. The bees not only help pollinate the coffee, but all of the agriculture on the farms. The families are also bringing in extra income by selling their honey at a local market.  One of my favorite moments was when Sonia gave us some honeycombs.  We immediately tried the honey and it was delicious!  Light, floral and delicate. Thank you Sonia for all you did to make us feel welcome. I will never forget the experience."
Woody meeting Sonia - Fair Trade contact heading up the Bee Project 

Woody meeting Sonia - Fair Trade contact heading up the Bee Project 

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