Coltropicos is a young company in the fresh produce sector, founded in 2021. However, thanks to the experience and expertise of its founding partners, the company has extensive knowledge in exporting and producing fresh produce. Jorge Molina, the Business Manager, attributes the success of the company to “the ability and experience of its founders to turn plans into a successful reality”.

Under their motto “Together with passion, we bring the best of our fields to the world”, Coltropicos specializes in packing, distribution, and exportation of Hass avocado and Tahitian lemon. The company sources from 20 produce associations and more than 190 small-holder farmers in the region. From the beginning, Coltropicos has wanted to bring value to the community where they belong, Guarne–Antioquia, Colombia. The company applies a circular economy model based on the principle of “producing by conserving and conserving by producing” supported by three fundamental pillars: economic reactivation, environmental responsibility, and social respect. “We provide technical know-how to the growers in the use of environmentally friendly practices (biofertilizers, biocontrol), quality assurance, and harvesting process,” says Jorge Molina. “We are proud of our certifications, Global GAP, GRASP, SMETA, and FSMA, which guarantee our commitment to high-quality products and compliance with international standards”.

In 2022, Coltropicos installed a state-of-the-art packaging plant in Colombia that features unique selection technology. This has resulted in an impressive 96% market acceptance rate, marking a new era for the company. With such a high level of accuracy, Coltropicos successfully exported Hass avocados to the European market in July 2022. Today, the company directly exports to United States, Spain, France, and the Netherlands, with further distribution to Germany and Eastern Europe. Coltropicos has built and maintained long-term commercial relationships with buyers by providing high-quality produce and keeping open communication channels. These solid customer relationships are further strengthened through cultivating relationships with producers, which drives growth and joint success. “We are committed to excellence and sustainability, and constantly strive to innovate and exceed standards, thereby strengthening our position and contributing to the well-being of the communities around us” said Jorge Molina. Coltropicos provides employment to 88 people, and the company’s workforce is diverse and committed to decent work, economic development, gender equality, and inclusion. The company employs 31% migrants, 17% women heads of household, and 8% people over 45 years old. Women in Coltropics have taken on administrative management roles, thus breaking stereotypes of leadership. Overall, Coltropicos’ human talent is a story of diversity and fair treatment, including employment opportunities, work-life balance, benefits, fair income, and work conditions.

In October 2023, as a beneficiary of the Women in Trade for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth Project in Colombia, Coltropicos participated in the Global Produce & Floral Show with the support of TFO Canada. Jorge Molina shared with us how hard he studied the potential clients and prepared for all his planned B2B meetings, “I learned that clients from the USA and Canada are more specific and in 5 minutes you must advance with the information and capture their attention”. The company received approximately $90,000.00 in orders. In a final comment, Jorge Molina told us: quality, expertise and social impact are the key factors for success.

TFO Canada is pleased to see tangible evidence of how preparation and effort pays off when companies participate in trade shows by creating sustainable business partnerships for exporters from developing countries. We would like to thank Jorge Molina, Business Manager of Coltropicos, for sharing their experiences.