In 1899, Federico Keller and his wife Isabel founded the Santa Isabel Farm in Santa Rosa Guatemala. Their grandsons Alex and Martin operate it now.
60% of the farm is planted with coffee under the native forest cover, while the remaining land is a protected nature preserve. The Keller family is dedicated to sustainable agriculture and sustainable community. They built a school (named for grandfather Federico), provide a health clinic and three meals a day for up to 1800 workers, and maintain the roads and bridges in their community.
In 2005, Alex and Martin transitioned the farm to operating with 100% organic farming. They compost the pulp and waste from the mill for fertilizer, use recycled water for processing and have a canal planted with lilies to naturally treat the mill’s waste-water.
Leaf rust is a big problem in their region, so the Kellers experiment with heartier and more rust-resistent varieties for the future of their farm. The rich family legacy has enabled the Santa Isabel farm to pursue innovative and creative new avenues for sustainable and organic agriculture.