BUSINESS: Cooperativa Agraria Cafetelera Pangoa (CAC Pangoa)
CITY: Peru
Country: Peru
The Cooperativa Agraria Cafetelera Pangoa (CAC Pangoa) was founded in 1977 by 50 farmers seeking better commercial opportunities. Working in solidarity with one another is a part of our Peruvian heritage. Centuries before us, the Incas practiced their own form of agricultural cooperation, exchanging work with one another on neighboring farms. We have drawn from and have further developed this type of cooperation within our own cooperative system. CAC Pangoa is a small producer cooperative with over 700 members who produce coffee, cacao, and other products. We operate under principles of cooperativism, including free and voluntary entry, democratic member control and participation, autonomy and independence, and programs for member education and development. We dedicated ourselves to cooperation with other cooperative organizations, and we hold up our commitment to our community. Our mission is to promote the development of our members and the greater community via the implementation of development programs and an emphasis on community solidarity.

Our cooperative is a diverse community, comprised of families that have migrated from the Sierras to the jungle as well as native Machiguenga and Ashaninka groups from the region of Junin. Since our founding as a cooperative business, we have supported cooperation between our Colonos (families of Sierra heritage) and indigenous groups. Despite significant cultural differences, we work together as farmers and partners (socios) to provide our customers with the highest quality products.

We designate Fairtrade premiums from coffee purchases to a number of development initiatives that directly benefit the members of our cooperative. The majority of our members cultivate coffee plots between five and ten hectares. Together the co-op has built an infrastructure including coffee and cocoa storage, coffee dryers, and postharvest processing for cocoa. Our products are organic and Fairtrade certified. CAC Pangoa has been exporting to Europe since 2001 and to US markets since 2003.