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  • Marta Dalton

Phoenix rising: Resilient Farmers

On the weekend of the 25th of January 2014, we visited Gustavo and toured his farms.


Him and I go way back - 30+ years to be exact. He would let me and my brother hang out of his sunroof and rock out to “Rock the Casbah” whilst he drove around Baton Rouge. I was 4 years old. A lot has changed since then!





Beyond his care and attention to each coffee plant and of course his tasty coffee, what struck me the most about our visit was his attitude and approach to the leaf rust crisis.


Gustavo exemplifies the courageous and fiery spirit of all the farmers we partner with. In the Apaneca-Llamatepec region (his region), coffee production is down by 80%. Read Gustavo's view on this crisis below.


Gustavo is an example to all of us to"never let a good crisis go to waste." - Winston Churchill

TRANSLATION:


"Around the Crisis"


Let’s not pretend that things change if we keep doing the same things. The Crisis is our greatest opportunity that happens to people and countries because crisis brings progress.


Creativity arises out of worry in the same way that the day is born from the dark night. It’s during a crisis that inventions, discoveries and great strategies are born. He who overcomes a crisis overcomes himself.


He who blames the crisis for its failures and scarcity, humiliates his own talent and respects problems more than solutions. The real crisis is the crisis of incompetence.


The problem with people and countries is conformism and laziness to find solutions and exits. Without crisis there are no challenges, without challenges life is a routine, and a slow agony.


Without crisis there are no merits. It is during a crisis where the best in each of us flourishes, because without crisis all wind is of kindness. To speak of the crisis is to promote it; to fall in crisis is to praise conformity. Instead, let’s work hard, stay optimistic, and understand that the future depends on what we do right now.


Let’s agree that the only threat of crisis, is the tragedy of not wanting to fight to overcome it.