Baú was founded in 1984 by Tomio Fukuda, a son of japanese imigrants and born in Sertaneja, north of Paraná State in Brazil, where he grew up working together with his family, usually on vegetables fields.
When Tomio was young, he got interested on Telecommunication Engineering. The knowledge acquired led him later to join Sumidenso company, working on the manufactoring of automotive electrical components in the late 70’s. Through Sumidenso, Tomio had the opportunity to join a trainee program and to have contact with companies like Honda and Toyota, which where already focused on quality and continuous quality improvement.
Pursuiting to achieve the vision of having his own business and to work again on the field, and also to try a Government incentive named POLOCENTRO, Tomio visited Cerrado region in Minas Gerais together with his brother Toshimitsu (POLOCENTRO was a federal program to incentivate the occupation of the Cerrado, but it ended before Tomio moved to the region).
After a few researchs looking for available lands, Tomio headed up to the plateau of the region named Baú for his very first time. When he reached the area, which was mostly occupied by degraded pasture and subsistence farming, he reports the he immediately felt a milder and pleasing temperature because of the altitude. He knew that it was a great condition for coffee farming, and from that pleasing feeling the decision to settle in the region of Baú was instant.
Then, on April 1984, after renouncing his bright career on a japanese company and gathering all his savings, Tomio bought his first portion of land on Baú region and moved with his wife Célia and his daughter Lissa to Lagoa Formosa-MG. A year later, his son Durval was born. And why coffee? One of the reasons to come to Lagoa Formosa surroundings is because Toshimitsu (Tomio´s brother) had a great friend whose Family was of well stablished coffee farmers at the neighbor city of Carmo do Paranaíba-MG (where already had extensive and consolidated coffee areas). That was the Shimosaka Family, to whom Tomio have great consideration and friendship, by sharing knowledge and technical and economic information about coffee.
Over more than 3 decades, Tomio and Célia cultivated other cultures such as beans, soybeans, cattle and tomatoes. But specially in the coffee plantations that Tomio’s way of working, always looking for quality and excellence, that resulted the best fruits. The knowledge acquired from his trainee program in Japan, such as 5S, Kaizen and Kanban, although not usual until then, started to be deployed by Tomio in the 90’s. From the deployment of these tools and constant improvements in management, with some resistance but with a lot of persistence, Baú evolved from “farm” status to an agribusiness company, being a benchmark for coffee quality.
In the mid-2000s, the second generation of the Fukuda family started to join the company,, and since then the 4 members of the family - Tomio, Célia, their son Durval and their daughter Lissa- have been leading the company by uniting the experiences of the first generation with the second generation’s innovations through family succession, always united by the same MISSION: to produce quality coffee while being a profitable company, always seeking for innovation, valuing our partners and employees and respecting the Environment.