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  • Writer's pictureJon Ferguson

What drives the notoriously higher prices from Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta?

There is often an initial sticker shock response to coffee offerings from the northern region of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in Colombia. Organizations and producers in the area continue to overcome this pricing hurdle by promoting producer networks where their commitment to social and environmental change often eclipses this price difference. Producer organizations continue to build solidarity with their clients who are committed to sharing the financial responsibility for continuing to build stronger social and environmental practices.

As the main harvest continues to provide fresh offerings from the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta region of northern Colombia, we are highlighting the partnership and investments with Red Ecolsierra, the main exporter and producer organization that co-designed the RioSierra Project located in the buffer zone of Colombia’s Sierra Nevada National Park. Red Ecolsierra is a group of 22 collective associations of coffee farmers, which began in 2001 and boasts 364 members. Red Ecolsierra has been very entrepreneurial through creating partnerships with Apisierra, a honey cooperative, acquiring a warehouse and small-scale facilities to transform coffee and honey, in addition to experimenting with the production of organic fertilizer and pesticides.

Red Ecolsierra was established with a mission to ensure organic traceability and transparency. The RioSierra Project, managed by Ecotierra and funded by Urapi, began collaborating with Red Ecolsierra in 2017, to further promote and expand the impact of their work in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.

Red Ecolsierra has successfully exported coffee from Colombia to eight countries across three continents, establishing themselves as a global leader and distributor of organic, fair trade, and environmentally focused coffee from Santa Marta, Sierra Nevada, Colombia. Their team is equipped to directly manage the exportation and processing of coffee within their farmer network, without subcontracting third-party involvement.

Notes from Red Ecolsierra help further explain the value they bring with their coffee offerings;

We know that there are minimum prices or benchmarks in the coffee market, but it is notorious that under the conditions of infrastructure in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, and prices on the New York Stock Exchange, we seek additional premiums that allow us to continue working in harmony with the environment, with quality standards to offer 80+ cups and within a supportive community.

That is why we justify our associativity, and among our producers we distribute administrative, logistics and operational costs to financially support our association. With this, we pay for the trips of the field technicians, the workshops for young people, the operational personnel and the processes in our administrative headquarters, the taxes for the government, our participation in events and specialty coffee fairs both in Colombia and abroad. abroad.

So, with the proceeds from the sales of these green coffees, we partly finance and build our association.


As an organization, we know that we must advance in other processes that are complementary to those that support organic farming and good labor practices in our coffee-growing regions. That is why:

We promote and encourage specific projects that provide concrete solutions to problems of ecological agricultural production, marketing, health, and formal and non-formal education. Allowing the improvement of the quality of life of families.

We support productive gender and equity initiatives.

We constantly support the process of rural economic diversification. As part of this process, we are currently promoting the beekeeping program among 150 producer families.” – Red Ecolsierra.

Our latest coffee offer is constantly updated here


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