The story of the Finca Grano de Oro starts in 1917 when my grandfather Don Alberto Bendix bought the property for his first daughter, Ella Bendix-Magaña. Doña Ella married Ing. Manuel Santana-Pinto in 1947, and together they ran the farm from 1971 until 1993 when I, Manuel Santana-Bendix, began helping them with the farm management.
I am a biologist by education and training, with a Master’s degree in Wildlife Science, and fully understand the importance of sustainable agriculture and continue the tradition of running the farm under such principles. Specifically, I continue the practice begun by my parents of not using any chemical pesticides. Instead I use biological controls and manual weeding practices.
The coffee grown on Finca Grano de Oro is mostly Bourbón (95%) with some interspersed arabico (typica) and Pacas. All of the coffee is cultivated under a diverse and full canopy of shade trees. Don Manuel continues to plant shade trees to increase the canopy height and species diversity. Currently, at least 34 species of trees thrive on the property including some like Cedro, Trompillo and Balsamo that are locally threatened. These trees provide shade and pesticide-free protection for a diversity of wildlife including many migrant bird species such as Wilson’s warbler, Black and White warblers and Townsend’s warblers. Other species commonly found on the farm include Altamira and Baltimore Orioles, Magpie jays, and the beautiful Blue-Crowned Motmot.
Access to better prices for coffee is essential to the development of Sustainable Agricultural practices both in regards to social and ecological health of the country.
I cannot produce a good quality product without my workers, but they need to feel that the progress of our farm is tied to their progress and the quality product that we gave to you the consumer.