Student Journal: summer dispatches from the field Orphans in Mexico: expanding the boys' goat cheese and soap business

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The Dispatches

1- It is 6 a.m., time to get up and be introduced to the goats

2 - Lunch with the big cheese and a road trip to Cancún

3 - Gringos and luggage up to the rafters, and assessing the goat cheese market in Cancún

4 - Milking the goats, a business meeting in Mexico City, and 'stoptional' red lights

5 - A new wave of volunteers, spending time with the boys

6 - Our recommendations to improve the orphanage's business operations



Fabio Matsui, Brent Mitchell, and Doug Brown, on location with the orphanage's cash cows, the goats
The Dispatches
In which our MBA candidates become 'chavos' after a daybreak introduction to the goats

ATLIXCO, MEXICO - Thanks to the great hospitality of the staff at IPODERAC, the four of us are feeling like part of the team here at the orphanage and we've been here less than a week. As a show of our acceptance here at IPODERAC, our status has continually become more casual. First we were referred to as "Ustedes" - a formal term of respect, then "Jovenes" - young ones, and finally "Chavos" - dudes.


Ask the Authors:

Doug Brown and Joost Krikhaar have agreed to answer your questions, time permitting. Email Doug and Joost

We got up at 6 a.m. and spent the day in the "queseria" to learn the cheese making process that supports the majority of IPODERAC's expenses. The sophistication of the process is impressive.

Raphael, a lifetime cheese maker from Switzerland who moved to Mexico 20 years ago, explained the process as it progressed. He and the staff made goat's milk boursin from over 100 liters of "leche de cabra" milked earlier that morning by the boys at IPODERAC. He also used another large batch of milk delivered fresh from a neighboring goat rancher. Raphael takes great pride in his work and was happy to offer us samples from the 20-kilogram wheels of gruyere cheese from the aging room.

By the end of the day, we had no doubt that IPODERAC makes the highest quality cheese around. We hope we can help them market it more effectively to increase funds available to the orphanage. More about that in our next dispatch ...

—Team IPODERAC (as known in Atlixco):

—Doug "Dooglas" Brown
—Joost "Rhymes with Most" Krikhaar
—Fabio "Brazilian Model" Matsui
—Brent "Bran - Brandon from 90210 without the Don" Mitchell


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