Welcome (once again) to this summer retrospective series. One of my favorite things about this podcast is that it’s truly a community of guests and listeners, where you often connect with each other, apart from me. When guests share so deeply and vulnerably with us, the listeners, I think it’s important to stay in touch and continue to conversation, as much as possible. In this spirit, I reached out to a few guests for follow-up interviews this summer. These interviews are each 30 minutes or less and totally un-edited so you’re getting the raw thoughts of both myself and my guests.
Today we’re bringing back another guest at the request of you, the listeners: Juan Luis Salazar. Juan is one of the most amazing, inspiring people I’ve met, ever. Period. Full stop. His full interview, which I released almost exactly a year ago today and titled “I Wanted Something Different” is what I consider a must-listen. It shares the story of a very young, very determined Juan choosing a life of hard work and risk to better not only himself, but his entire community. Juan and the brave farmers who chose to join him did something no one in Guatamela has done before OR since - they started a Guatamelan-owned coffee cooperative where they had control over their own wages.
When we talked last year, Juan, now living in DC, had opened a coffee shop just weeks beforehand, right in the middle of the pandemic. The goal was to source the coffee from his family’s farm first, and later, from the farms in the cooperative. If Juan could take this step, he would be removing the middle man *entirely* from between the farm to the consumer and could guarantee farmers, including his own father, the best and fairest wages they had ever received, changing the lives of their entire families. Today we talk about Juan’s progress toward this goal, the way he was threatened by a landlord attempting to illegally break his lease, and the community that has supported Juan and LaCoop Coffee. Just like the original, it’s another must-listen episode, so welcome to Juan and welcome to YOU!
Listen to Juan Now
Juan's Original Interview For The Storied Recipe Podcast: "I Wanted Something Different"
How to Connect with Juan Luis Salazar and La Coop Coffee