Sitio Baixadão is owned by the producer Helisson Afonso da Silva, whose father, Sebastião Afonso da Silva, was the champion of the Cup Of Excellence Naturals Concourse, in 2015. Helisson has learned everything from his father and today is in love with the coffee universe. Together the family group manages small properties in Cristina, a city located in the Mantiqueira de Minas Geographical Indication region, which, through a combination of soil, climate and elevation, along with the coffee growing tradition, is recognized as one of the most awarded regions in Brazil.
The family first business was growing rice, and in the year of 1995 they started to work in coffee production. Nowadays, they don’t work with rice anymore, only coffee and in the property with 11 hectares an average altitude of 1350 meter, the coffee plantation has differents varieties, such as Yellow and Red Catuaí, Acaiá and Yellow Bourbon.
Silva family coffees are recognized worldwide for their complexity and unique characteristics, reaping all their dedicated and meticulous work.
Another important factor is respect for nature; the family has a sustainable coffee production, preserving the flora and fauna on their properties.
Harvesting is done selectively by hand, the beans are harvested and taken to the processing center. Drying is done in patios under the sun and, if necessary, is finished in dryers that guarantee a homogeneous drought, preserving the quality. The coffee is finally stored in the Cocarive warehouse (a Cooperative in Carmo de Minas), which has a commercialization area with a department fully dedicated to these high quality coffees.
Cocarive (Cooperativa Regional dos Cafeicultores do Vale do Rio Verde) was established in 1961. The objective of forming the co-operative was to increase productivity amongst the members as well as the quality of coffee to achieve better pricing on the world market, and take control of their futures.
That control has lead to the Serra de Mantiqueira being recognised not only as one of the best coffee producing areas in Brazil, but special enough to have earned a Protected Denomination of Origin status. Producers from Mantiqueira De Minas have over 358 awards from Cup of Excellence between them, including the highest score from any coffee of any country.
Over the past 5 decades Cocarive has grown in size, but their commitment to coffee excellence never waned. Their first warehouse was inaugurated in 1984, with headquarters next door. In 1996 the offices were fully renovated and 2012 saw them begin exporting their coffee.
Their push for continuous improvement has seen their cup scores improve from over 50% scoring 79 and below in 2011/12, to 94% above 80, and 47% now scoring 84+.
Progress has continued with larger premises built in 2006 with a second, neighbouring premises being built in 2023.
Focus is now shifting towards production methods, with many young farmers embracing more organic methodologies and utilising intercropping to improve soil health.