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In the 1940s, coffee cultivation began in this region, primarily in the lowlands, playing a secondary economic role. However, by the 1970s, coffee emerged as the primary economic sector, driven by high prices, particularly for Typica and Bourbon varieties.
In 2011, the region faced a severe setback due to the rust disease, devastating most farms. Despite this, producers, determined to continue in the coffee industry, embarked on farm renovations, introducing rust-resistant varieties. While some stuck to traditional types, they coexisted with the rust.
The potential of specialty coffee gained recognition through COE competitions, leading producers to enhance processes and export micro-lots via the San Vicente mill. Coffee has since become the economic backbone and a vital cultural element in these communities.
In 2017, Geisha variety gained prominence globally, with small plots planted in Santa Barbara. This introduced new challenges and market opportunities for producers, resulting in the propagation of Geisha in the region's small farm lots.