We are often asked whether our coffee is also organic. Our answer: better than that!
Our farmers have long since jumped on the organic path. They are pioneers for the region. It is a joint organic path that the coffee producers are taking with Serraniagua. Because if the soil does well, the coffee plants do well and so do the farmers. Organic certification is already in progess. Within the framework of these initiatives, we rely on participatory guarantee schemes (SGP or PGS) as models for participatory network certification.

„Participatory guarantee schemes (SGP or PGS) are locally oriented quality assurance systems. They certify producers based on the active participation of stakeholders and build on a foundation of trust, social networks and knowledge sharing.“

IFOAM – Organics International supports the development of SGP as an alternative and complementary tool to third-party certification in the organic sector and advocates for the recognition of PGS by governments.

For CAFÉ COMAM, we value smallholder and organic cultivation. For really good coffee, a forest with other shade-giving trees is indispensable. Only in the shade do the coffee cherries have enough time to develop their full aroma. In forest gardens, the Arabica coffee bush feels particularly at home and therefore does not need any chemical to survive. Only biological additives made from effective microorganisms and minerals are used.

Chemical additives are available everywhere, but biological ones are very difficult to obtain and often involve long journeys. Serraniagua is committed to producing organic preparations for the small farmers in the region and continuously organises agro-ecological workshops on organic farming and improving soil fertility. Together with Serraniagua, biofabricas have been created on several fincas to produce organic preparations with effective microorganisms, minerals and earthworm compost. 


According to a study in the journal Science, conventionally grown coffee is one of the most climate-problematic foods of all.
But what are the decisive parameters? For the CO2 footprint, the entire life cycle of a product is considered, from cultivation to disposal. The study clearly shows that it is not overseas transport but cultivation that is the most decisive factor. Conventional cultivation and the associated clearing of rainforest areas are responsible for 85 % of greenhouse gases!

When it comes to climate justice, attention must therefore be paid to the cultivation and origin of coffee. Coffee that is cultivated in original mountain forests in ecological shade cultivation is many times better than coffee from monocultures. Precise traceability and a transparent origin of the coffee beans are therefore particularly important, because even the Fairtrade or organic seal does not contain this information. 

Transport by sailing ship is of course the most ecological alternative, but even a full cargo ship container only accounts for a very small percentage of the carbon footprint. The fuller the container, the better. And volume can be saved by roasting in the country of origin, for example, because roasted coffee weighs about 20 % less. 


Coffee is a shade crop and was traditionally cultivated exclusively in the shade of large trees in the form of mixed crops or forest gardens. Today, in order to achieve higher yields, coffee is mainly grown in monocultures. To increase yields, rainforest is cleared and chemical pesticides are used. Soils are depleted and the lack of protection from shady trees means that cold snaps and hot spells damage the coffee bushes.

Coffee cultivated in organic shade is climate-friendly by contributing to the protection of the rainforest and biodiversity. Instead of clearing trees, original forest is preserved. Through the sustainable cultivation of coffee in the shade, sustainable agriculture is practised in the cycle of nature. This climate-friendly cultivation not only has a positive impact on the ecological balance, but also on quality. Only in the shade do the coffee cherries have enough time to develop their full aroma.


Arabica coffee plants are very sensitive and react to the changing climate. The coffee bushes wait for sunny, hot days to flower. But because of all the rain, the flowers fall off immediately and only a few coffee cherries will grow. This is a big problem for our coffee producers.

Coffee grown in organic shade is better adapted to climate change. The shade trees shield the coffee from extreme sunlight, heavy rains and cold spells. The sensitive coffee bushes are thus better protected from weather extremes. Mixed crops with shade trees also improve soil fertility and serve as erosion protection for the already often very steep slopes. At the same time, habitat for birds, insects, fungi and plants is preserved and created, contributing to the promotion of biodiversity and species diversity.


The Serraniagua environmental community has also set itself the goal of preserving the region’s biodiversity. This includes the pristine tropical rainforests as well as the tradition and culture of coffee cultivation in traditional forest gardens. 

In addition to the sustainable cultivation of coffee in the shade, the coffee producers leave several hectares of land to nature. This ranges from 2 hectares to as much as 12 hectares! In this way, many small nature reserves are created and tropical rainforest is preserved. This, of course, promotes the biodiversity of the region!


The Serranía de los Paraguas Nature Reserve is located in the western Andean mountain range of Colombia. It is an important biodiversity hotspot of the tropical Andes of international significance. The hilly green landscape in the Serranía de los Paraguas nature reserve is rich in biodiversity and covered with native rainforest. El Cairo and the coffee fincas of our coffee producers are located in the middle of the nature reserve. The region was declared a nature reserve through initiatives by Serraniagua. A key region for global biodiversity of over 200,000 hectares.