Orlando, aged 30, lives at his farm with his wife and two younger children. Orlando’s is fortunate to own two farms, one of which he received as an early inheritance on his wedding day. Like so many producers in the region, Orlando learned about coffee production from his parents and grandparents. Coffee production is Orlando’s primary means of income, with any fruit trees or other produce grown reserved only for personal consumption. The name El Guayaquil is in reference to the bamboo trees found on the farm. Like many other farms in the region, the name is symbolic, reflecting the distinguishing characteristics in the surrounding area.
Coffee was introduced to Peru in the mid-18th century via neighbouring Ecuador but was not commercially exported until the late 19th century. Production was only increased significantly after the turn of the 20th century, when Peru’s default on a loan owed to the British Government saw over two million hectares of land transferred to Britain (under the name of ‘The Peruvian Country’) as a repayment. A full quarter of this was put under agricultural production, including coffee, and it was at this point that export trade began in earnest.