With a cooperative board led by twelve Bangdong families, Zhuhong has organized his entire village into a new company with the goal of producing Yunnan's finest coffee beans. Moreover, he aims to be the first in Yunnan to provide certified organic coffee beans grown, roasted and packaged all at the village level.
On this trip to Bangdong, I was accompanied by an Indian man and an American woman who came with the goal of helping Zhuhong start his own organic fertilization production. As fertilizer accounts for a large portion of the costs of coffee farming, even more so if one commits to growing organically, composting locally is extremely important.
Zhuhong now has over 300 mu planted and hopes to plant another 700 mu early next year. Right now he remains focused on organic certification, licensing and fertilizer production. If all goes well, we'll see his coffee on the market by 2014. His commitment and ever increasing professionalism serve him well as he moves forward with a project that holds great economic potential for the entire village.