Farm: Fazendas Dutra
Altitude: 950 to 1,300 metres above sea level
Owner: Ednilson Alves Dutra, Walter Cesar Dutra and Family
Town / City: Matas de Minas
Region: Sao Joao do Manhuaçu, Minas Gerais
Overall: Marzipan, strawberry & nuts
Fazenda Dutra Agua Limpa - Brazil
Fazendas Dutra is comprised of five farms all of which belong to members of the Dutra family. Together, the farms occupy 764 hectares of prime coffee growing land nestled in the green hills of the Sao Joao do Manhuaçu district in the spectacular coffee-producing state of Minas Gerais. This particular lot hails from the farm ‘Agua Limpia’, 240 hectares of which are composed of prime coffee growing land. Like all the Fazendas Dutra farms, Agua Limpia has been meticulously cultivated in perfect harmony with nature over the course of more than 50 years. The climate, the soil and the altitude convey distinctive aromas, flavors and a balanced body that have been recognized by multiple coffee quality competitions, national and international.
Fazendas Dutra originated from a small farm inherited by José Dutra Sobrinho at the beginning of the 1950s. ‘Zeca’ Dutra saw the potential in the land despite the farm’s small size and applied his passion for coffee farming to expand and improve the farm. He worked hard over the years to expand the fazenda’s size, persevering even as the coffee crises of the mid-1980s presented major difficulties to small farmers across Brazil. During these tough times, the family’s course of action was to continue believing and investing in their production, intensifying their dedication to producing high quality coffee and to expanding the area under production.
Zeca Dutra passed away in September of 1999, leaving over 300 hectares of coffee to his sons, Walter and Ednilson. Walter and Ednilson decided that in order to make the most of their father’s legacy, they needed to invest heavily in their education as a means of moving the farms forward into the new century. They’ve worked tirelessly not only on the farms themselves but also to expand their base of knowledge so that they can apply the best possible practices to their farming.
As a result of the investment in knowledge, since 2000, Fazendas Dutra’s reputation has grown exponentially and the brothers have won multiple awards for their coffee quality. They have been included on lists as one of the top 50 best growers of Brazil and have achieved quality certifications from the BSCA (Brazil Specialty Coffee Association).
Today, the brothers farm over 500 acres of level-curve-planted coffee and are planning on expanding cultivation even more. They produce 16 thousand bags/year (approx. 40 bags/hectare), of which 6 thousand are of specialty grade coffee. The farms employee 50 people year-round and provide an additional 250 jobs during the low season and 600 jobs in the period of the harvest. The secret of this success is passion, hard work and a continuous commitment to improving quality.
The Dutra Family manages their farms with a strong respect for nature. They have planted “green curtains” to protect against strong winds, which provides a natural, eco-friendly control against pests. The brothers also focus on the preservation of local water supplies and carefully manage the water used in their Fully-Washed and Semi-Washed processing. The farm, as well, recycles coffee waste to be used as fertilizer for the plantation, and all plastic waste on the farm is recycled.
Social commitment and community are also central to the values of the Dutra Family. Employees at the farms receive regular training and education – from health and safety to new agronomic techniques - and families are encouraged to establish their own gardens in their homes. Fazendas Dutra also supports the “Family Health Program” (Programa de Saúde da Família) – where continued health care is provided to employees’ families – and provides support to the local school.
In everything they do, the Dutra family lives by the theory that knowledge is only valuable when it is shared. They share the success of their farms with all those who contribute to the high quality of the coffees they produce.
For more information, please see http://www.fazendasdutra.com.br/.