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Production Enterprises Estabished by Expatriates

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Home / Preface
5 - Costa Rica in Brief
6 - Map of Costa Rica
8 - Symbols of Costa Rica
9 - Introduction
12 - Getting a Bird's Eye View
14 - Why Choose Costa Rica?
18 - Costa Rica Has Many Firsts to its Name
22 - A Place That Accepts All Races
30 - The Friendliness of the Costa Ricans
33 - Ticos are Individualistic
35 - Ticos Are Different and Procrastinators
38 - Why Others Have Gone Abroad
42 - Specific Reasons for Leaving Home
45 - Culture Shock
48 - Enjoy Your Retirement by Adjusting
49 - Ways to Adjust to Your New Life
56 - Making Your Stay More Satifying
58 - Cost of Living
67 - Addresses and Directions
69 - Your Car and Driving
71 - How Not to Be Obnoxious to Locals
74 - Adjusting to the Weather and Climate
76 - Choosing the Right Climate for You
77 - City Living versus Country Living
79 - Where to Live in Costa Rica
82 - Living in Your American Style
84 - Top Quality Health Services
87 - Medical Centers in San José
89 - Dying in Costa Rica
91 - Security and Safety in Costa Rica
94 - Personal Experiences of Petty Thievery
98 - Sex and Romance
101 - Going into Business Yourself
105 - Expatriates Production Enterprises
110 - Expatriates Service Businesses
114 - The Business Environment
120 - Helpful Tips for the Newcomer
125 - National Holidays and Festivities
128 - Religion, Churches & Support Groups
131 - The Optimism and Health Link
133 - The 8 Point Formula for Anti-Aging
134 - Obtaining Insurance
136 - Early Colonial History in Brief
139 - English Language & Tico Expressions
144 - Misdemeanors That Are Now Felonies
146 - Closing Words
148 - Bibliography
149 - For More Information and Contacts
151 - Appendix
155 - Index

At that time very few people knew that a vegetable oil based butter was healthy and available, but the product gradually became accepted. His wife took care of the accounting and he dedicated himself to production and marketing. In years his edible oil products firm became one of the biggest enterprises in Central America. He later sold the company to Standard Brands (previously known as United Fruit Company) which not only retained him but also appointed him vice-president and advisor of its tropical operations.


F.J. half Czechoslovakian and half Swede, born in Kansas City, Kansas, and with a B.S. degree earned at the University of Chicago, became the paint king of Costa Rica. It was while talking with some of his students from Costa Rica in 1947 that he first learned about the country. He took a summer vacation to Costa Rica, and seeing and liking the place, decided to stay. First as a researcher for the United Fruit Company to study the abacá plant near the Pacuare River on the Caribbean side.

Recognizing that no house paints were being made in the country, F.J with $5000 from his savings started a small paint business in the backyard of his rented house in San José. He imported iron oxide, titanium, all the necessary pigments, and did his own mixing with hand sticks. I think I was one of his first clients. In 1952,when I built my first two residential rental houses, I went to his place and bought from him several gallons of white, brown and green paint. In years his firm grew rapidly, expanded with plants in other Central American countries, and was eventually sold to a multinational company in the states with headquarters in Minnesota.


J.S. a Texan, bought land at low cost in Guanacaste Province of Costa Rica, established an ostrich ranch, and today is successfully raising the big birds. To get started, he brought an air shipment of 91 adult birds and eight young ones plus 30 eggs from Botswana. The ostriches adapted marvellously to the savannas of Guanacaste, which has acclimate very similar to the one of their natural habitat in Africa. J.S. then exported ostrich eggs, meat, feathers, skins and nails to the States.


Dr. F.P. a neurosurgeon, and his wife, who was also his assistant, both from Wisconsin, decided it was time to retire and get into an activity other than medicine. They chose Costa Rica and in 1977 settled on the outskirts of Ciudad Colón where they built their comfortable house and then went on to buy a 500 acres farm up the mountains a few miles away. After taking into account several possible activities to undertake, they decided in 1982 to go into sheep raising.

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