Communication skills training for coffee producers in western Honduras

Loyola University professor Emma Camarero during her visit to western Honduras.
  • Some thirty representatives of small and medium-sized organizations are learning how to increase the visibility of their products and brands.
  • The project of the ETEA Foundation and the NGO CESAL is being carried out during a week’s training with Spanish teachers in the town of San Marcos de Ocotepeque.
  • Storytelling, creation of audiovisual formats, management of social networks and relations with the media are the main lines of work.


A dozen entities of the booming coffee sector in Western Honduras have participated in the specific training program in communication for producers organized by the ETEA Foundation – Development Institute of Loyola University, which has trained different profiles of the organizations to lead their communication processes.

Thus, the thirty students of the workshop have been trained during an intensive week in storytelling techniques, recording and editing of audiovisual formats such as video and podcast, environmental and product photography and management of profiles in social networks.

According to Emma Camarero, professor of communication at Loyola University and director of the workshop, “a product of the excellence of Honduran coffee, which also has a formidable social and economic impact in the area, deserves a solvent and professional communication, and those who best know the techniques of cultivation and production are the ones who can best perform this task”.

Professor Camarero has also highlighted the majority female presence in the workshop “as evidence that women are taking on significant roles in an industry traditionally managed by men, such as coffee, and it is also the circumstance that they are young women with a high capacity to develop in the field of communication channels“.

The average age of the participants, around 25 years old, has also been one of the noteworthy aspects of the workshop, as it guarantees generational integration in the coffee sector, also incorporating an innovative mentality in relation to the technification of crops and processes and the necessary dissemination of products and initiatives of each of the participating projects.

This circumstance has also made it possible to address cutting-edge formats such as the podcast, due to its high penetration rate among the youngest sectors of the population. For this purpose, the content director of Qwerty Radio, Óscar Gómez, has been in charge of the specific training in audio format production.

Óscar Gómez (Qwerty Radio) during one of the training sessions.

Field work

The design of the training program included two days of theoretical development and one day of recording under the supervision of the professors at the Pashapa coffee farm in the municipality of La Labor. During the latter, the students recorded material with which they then used for their practical projects, which they developed during the last two days. To do so, they had to deliver a press kit made up of press releases, audio and video files, photographs, and posts for social networks, as well as the creation of profiles on Facebook and Instagram and a YouTube channel.

It so happens that many of the projects have taken advantage of the training to create communication materials that they have already begun to disseminate. This is the case of the Cocafelol cooperative -one of the largest in the Honduran coffee industry- which has started the production of a podcast channel entitled ‘Gente del café’ (People of coffee), which collects stories and experiences of its members.

The case of Yaunera

As an example of one of the projects that have been integrated into the ETEA Foundation’s training program, it is worth mentioning the one led by industrial engineer Iris Alvarado, who has taken the reins of the family coffee farm to lead it to an evolution based on knowledge and good environmental and social practices. Café Yaunera decided to become a multi-service company and in the space of a year has already managed to associate 150 small producers in the municipality of San Pedro de Copán.

In the words of the vice-president of its board of directors, Francisco Bertrand, “it was essential to take the next step by communicating our project, and that is why we decided to attend this training, convinced that it will benefit our associates”.

Boosting local competitiveness in Honduras

The intervention “Promoting local competitiveness for poverty reduction in vulnerable populations through sustainable and inclusive value chains in Western Honduras” is an AECID agreement implemented by the NGDO CESAL and the ETEA Foundation.

The project identifies four consolidated production chains (Basic Grains, Vegetables, Honey and Coffee) and other emerging potentials (Agrotourism, Avocado, Plantain) and seeks to improve productivity, resilience to climate change and transformation processes with greater market value. Within the framework of the agreement, the ETEA Foundation is responsible for the coffee value chain.