The La Amistad farm is located above 1200 meters next to the border between Cost Rica and Panama. This farm has been a family farm for generations and the family has kept much of it as natural forest. It is now a "National Private Protected Area" called Las Tablas, which forbids people from hunting, extracting wood or doing any damage to the area. The reserve is located next to the National Park, La Amistad, one of the few National Parks between two countries and is the largest reserve area in Costa Rica. The diversity of flora and fauna found in this area is very unique, with a large number of endemic species that may be on the verge of extinction. The farm itself has a ten-room lodge for ecotourism. The natural tours into the mountain are always done with a local guide and on restricted areas of the mountain.
The food served in the dining room of the lodge is prepared by native women that live on the farm. When spending the night at the lodge, you will have the privilege of being awakened early in the morning to the many sounds of all the different birds singing and the obnoxious screams of the monkeys that also inhabit the rain forest around the farm. But the beauty of this place, with the sounds of the birds and monkeys, brings peace to the soul and a wonderful reminder of the romance that coffee brings to our lives. The word "amistad" means friendship, and in this special place, it amplifies the real meaning of friendship. La Amistad is a friend to the forest, to the animals, to the community, and to the land around it.
One of the main sources of income for this farm is the organic coffee. The owners of the La Amistad farm have been actively growing organically for the past ten years. The land that the coffee is now grown on was previously pasture land, with each pasture being separated by bands of forest. These areas give access for the wildlife to be able to move around and still have commercial coffee production going on at the same time.
There are also organic vegetable gardens on the estate, growing Jalapeño and sweet peppers to make their own organic salsa. The farm has plenty of shade trees, and in addition to these, a few years ago. Erythrina and leguminous trees were also planted for a supply of Nitrogen to the coffee system, where there was not enough. The coffee from La Amistad is organic shade grown certified by OCIA. The farm is mostly self-sufficient; the streams from the rain forest supply the water for washing the coffee as well as the power source for the farm, due to it's own hydro-electrical plant. The fertilizers for the plants come from composting the waste from the animals, the cherry pulp, leaves, and ashes. The coffee is dried on cement patios as weather conditions permit and is then sent for milling, which is done to specific and very strict standards. The end result is a coffee that has a mild body, mild acidity, and a clean cup.
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