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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    St Paul, Minnesota
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    Have growers... How to bring to the US?

    Hello group, I am fortunate enough to speak Spanish fluently, and have personal connections to growers in Guatemala. I want to start importing into the US. What seems to be the preferred method? I would start in smaller quantities then graduate up. Any feedback as to modes of transportation (truck through Mexico? barge and container from Guatemala to a port here?) would be deeply appreciated. Thank you!

  2. #2
    Member
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    Mar 2018
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    CT
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    I have done some preliminary digging into this myself. Have farmer in Mexico who expressed the same interest. Have heard too many bad scenarios vs good in trying to make this happen if the relationship with the farm is not well established, and even with the established relationships, import brokers are usually brought into the mix to avoid any speculation of illegal traffic from government agencies. I realize this is not overly helpful. Perhaps a more tenured member has better advice.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Aug 2018
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    United States
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    Go for the advertising and promotion that will help you to achieve your goal.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Nov 2008
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    Canada
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    The question to ask is.........Can I sell what I import.

    If you can sell it, then you can import it.
    How is your coffee different from the big boys importing multiple containers on razor thin margins ?
    Can I warehouse the coffee. What are the freight costs to get the coffee to the warehouse ? How much per lb to warehouse the coffee. What are the administrative costs to release the coffee from warehouse ?
    Why should I buy it ?

  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    Jun 2018
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    St Paul, Minnesota
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    All good points... I am confident I can sell what I import. The coffee is excellent by anyone's standards. Maybe not entirely from the "big boys" as you say, but I KNOW the growers and I hope to cut out some middlemen (no offense meant ladies). I am going there next weekend to meet with the growers and firm everything up!

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Nov 2008
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    Canada
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    By the container is normally ship then rail but if you are buying a partial, I dunno what is best, that is unless you can find a person to split a container or find space on someone elses container.

    One small issue will be handling as wood pallets are not allowed to be used for shipping (infestation) so there is a cost will repacking onto pallets at destination

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    746
    Hi Bi,

    How experienced are you in the coffee business? Just asking because I have a friend who started a coffee exporting company five years ago. He works as an agent for coffee growers and has a business partner in Guatemala who is very knowledgeable and connected in the industry, and even with all their knowledge and connections, they have been taken advantage of by an unscrupulous beneficio. They lost a client when their lots of coffee were held back from processing and export because of "other commitments", and their customer in Australia had to wait and wait and wait some more. And this was AFTER recovering from the same customer being sent a lot of coffee that was not what was sent to the beneficio for processing and export. All I'm saying is be cautious and expect that perhaps along the way there will be some drama. It is very difficult...close to impossible...to get to the level of having an export licence in Guatemala. The large companies try to keep smaller entities out of that end of the business. If your contacts do not have an export license, then you will be at the mercy of the beneficio they use. The stronger that relationship, the better your chances of success. That's about all I can add here...

    Peaberry

  8. #8
    Junior Member
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    Jun 2018
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    St Paul, Minnesota
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    Thank you! Good words of wisdom... I know the growers VERY well...family... That being said I can see the bureaucracy and permitting to do anything in Guatemala will be challenging.

 

 

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