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Hero coffee from Colombia

HAND IN HAND partner ANEI devotes itself to the protection of Mother Earth
Four indigenous communities collaborate in the Colombian ANEI Cooperative. Their goal is to pursue sustainable and fair coffee cultivation in harmony with nature. Fair trade helps the small peasants and their families to improve their life quality and to secure their wellbeing in the future - keeping alive both their own culture and the natural biodiversity. This makes them heroes.  
Hand in Hand Logo
Through the HAND IN HAND program, ANEI supplies Rapunzel with organic and fair-trade, raw Arabica coffee. With its proprietary and externally certified fair trade program, Rapunzel guarantees more than just fair compensation. HAND IN HAND stands for personal contact at eye level, long-term cooperation and the support of local projects as well as excellent organic quality. The hero coffee from Colombia is characterized by a mild, but full-bodied aroma that reminds of nuts, chocolate and fine spices.

more about hero coffee
Kaffee Grafik
ANEI in brief
  • Cooperative with indigenous peasants in Norteast Colombia
  • 620 peasant families from 67 regions
  • founded in 1995, HAND IN HAND partner since 2021
  • Cultivation of Arabica coffee in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and in Serranía del Perijá

ANEI was founded by a pioneer 

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The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in Northeast Colombia harbors the highest coastal mountains worldwide. Here, farmers and peasants from four indigenous communities -  the Arhuacas, Koguis, Kankuamos and the Wiwas - merged into one peasant organization. The goal of the Association of Indigenous Agroecology Producers, abbreviated ANEI, is to strengthen the indigenous community and to secure a good income through direct export of top-quality, fair-trade, organic coffee.
Aurora María Izquierdo Torres, foundress and director of ANEI
Aurora María Izquierdo Torres, foundress and director of ANEI
Aurora María Izquierdo Torres, foundress and director of ANEI
Drying the organic, fair-trade Arabica beans
Drying the organic, fair-trade Arabica beans
Drying the organic, fair-trade Arabica beans
Hero coffee Colombia, whole beans HAND IN HAND
Hero coffee Colombia, whole beans HAND IN HAND
ANEI was founded in 1995 by Aurora María Izquierdo Torres. She was the first woman of the indigenous Jewrwa community in Arhuacas, who left her home in order to study in the Colombian capital of Bogotá. During her studies in agriculture, she focused on how her community could benefit from coffee cultivation.

Upon returning home, she initiated a sustainable agricultural program - and founded ANEI. Today, the cooperative includes 620 small peasant families from 67 regions of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and the neighboring mountainous region, the Serranía del Perijá.

Fair trade strengthens the indigenous communities

The members of ANEI receive pre-payment for their harvest and, if needed, also access to microcredits. The premium from the HAND IN HAND fair trade program also makes possible education and training programs, as well as the implementation of social projects. The farmers themselves decide how the fair-trade premium is used.

One focus is food security of the people through the cultivation of domestic food products and the installation of fruit gardens and fish ponds. With these projects, ANEI aims to strengthen the local agricultural production and ensures access to sufficient and healthy food products for all the families in the community. 
Additionally, ANEI also supports rural schools. The fair-trade premium gives the peasant families financial support for the schooling of their children, for school materials and traditional clothes. Equipping the schools with solar collectors is another projects that ANEI is implementing.

Young people receive stipends for academic education. Education strenghtens both, individuals and the community, and the association can make use of newly acquired knowledge.
ANEI offers regular trainings for its members
ANEI offers regular trainings for its members
ANEI offers regular trainings for its members

Advancement of women and promotion of the indigenous culture

Women play an important role, both in the indigenous as well as the coffee culture. In the indigenous culture of the Sierra, women are the symbol of Mother Earth, representing fertility, purity and naturalness. ANEI therefore puts a special focus on the protection of Mother Earth and the conservation of nature also with respect to the cultivation of coffee.

ANEI set themselves the task to support the women in the community: with education, trainings and special projects for the marketing of women coffee. Of the 620 members of the Cooperative, 102 are women and the percentage of women in the staff of the organization totals 70 %.

Through the cultivation of coffee, ANEI also wants to strengthen the regional communities. This way, the traditional values of the indigenous culture, their language and the territories of the indigenous people will be protected and restored.

More about hero coffee and the coffee heroes 


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