Asociación Civil Guaya’b is a coffee cooperative located in the Huehuetenango region of Guatemala. The cooperative currently consists of 330 members, 316 of whom are of indigenous descent. Formally established in 1998, Guaya’b began selling to the Fair Trade market in 2000. The sales made by Guaya’b have brought stability to the cooperative and have enabled members to meet their basic needs. With the Fair Trade price, Guaya’b farmers have increased their own earnings and reinvested a portion of their profits into the community. As a result, the region’s economy is more stable and the rate of migration has decreased. Some of the projects conducted with Fair Trade premiums include:
- Medical Insurance Guaya’b cooperative members voted to finance medical insurance for members and their families with Fair Trade premiums.
- Low Interest Micro Loans Guaya’b cooperative members are provided with low-interest loans which allows them to avoid unscrupulous local lenders.
- Income from Additional Crops Guaya’b members have invested premium funds into growing peanuts, fruit and peppers for sale in local markets.