Mr. Adrian Ortiz, a Spanish immigrant married Miss Mercedes Rivera and settled down in Santiago de Maria, In the Usulután department of El Salvador. They started growing coffee in Las Mercedes the year of 1886. Mr. Adrian passed away in 1898 and until 1941 the farm was managed by Mrs. Mercedes Rivera de Ortiz.
In 1941, Mrs. Mercedes passes away, and the Farm is handed over to Mr. Adrian Ortiz Jr. until his death in 1976. Then it was passed to Mr. Roberto Ortiz and Family, who run the farm up to this day.
The farm has been owned by five generations of the Ortiz Family and has had a lot of up and downs, especially during the civil war of the 1980´s, time during which this region suffered greatly.
Even though we had all this difficulty we managed to preserve the farm in a healthy state. Nevertheless, in 2001 an earthquake affected the farm, destroying homes and buildings in the community as well as our clay patios and other farm infrastructure. That year Mr. Roberto Ortiz decided to bring Las Mercedes back to its glory days.
In the following years the wet mill and the water tanks were rebuilt, and a continuing expansion of the infrastructure of the farm was undertaken. A bigger tank called "EL BIG" was built, as well as new clay patios and new ceramic tile ditches. New roads were built for better access to the different parts of the farm. A certification process of the farm was made, and nowadays we have the Rainforest Alliance certification not only for the farm but also for the mill.
To test for the quality of our coffee we started to cup the different areas of the farm. We discovered that we had great quality and decided to participate in Cup of Excellence. At this time there was the belief that coffee farms from the eastern part of the country, were Las Mercedes farm is located, produced low quality coffee. On the other hand, it was believed the best coffee was produced in the western part of the country. Then, surprise, surprise, we won FISRT PLACE CUP OF EXCELLENCE in 2006 with a PRESIDENTIAL AWARD of 94 points. In 2009 we participated again, and we won SIXTH PLACE CUP OF EXCELLENCE with 89.4 points, proving that we not only had a good coffee but also one of the best coffees of El Salvador.
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