Have you ever paused to think about all of the amazing origin countries that the equator passes through? The most obvious, Ecuador, might not be the first to come to mind. Ecuador is one of the more elusive origins, likely the result of a high cost of production, which makes it more difficult to compete in a global market. A producer’s survival here depends on an ability to make a premium to cover the higher costs of labor. This is the strategy taken by Renzo Paladines Puertas, who cultivates coffee along with Banano (Musa paradisiaca); Guaba (Inga sp); Níspero (Eriobotrya japónica); Naranja, Limón, Lima, Limón dulce (Citrus sp); Guayaba (Psidium guajaba) on a 7.5-acre farm called Finca Uchima. Renzo’s focus is on processing with meticulous cherry harvesting and floating to remove under ripe and damaged beans. Then he depulps, ferments, washes and gently dries on raised beds at the farm. The finished parchment is stored until it is time to mill and export.