- Oct - December
Ethiopia Bale Mountain G1 Longberry Natural 2020
- FREE UPS
- 65lb Freshness
- Packed & Sealed
WELCOME TO THE HIGHLAND FORESTS OF ETHIOPIA
The “Cinderellas” of Ethiopian coffee are now at last accessible in their full glory. Left to grow amongst the forest with minimal or little attention, the coffee varietals of the forests of Bale have always grown wild. As part of a forest conservation initiative, the potential of these forest coffees is now being fully realized thanks to a collaboration between Farm Africa, forest communities and other key partners to proactively build a truly sustainable livelihood. This is against a backdrop where 92,000 hectares of Ethiopia’s forests were reportedly lost to deforestation in 2019.
Premium Ethiopian Wild Forest coffees developed by Farm Africa
It is well known that arabica coffees originated in the amazing highland forests of Ethiopia which are some of the most ecologically diverse and important in the world. However, as commercial coffee production developed across the country, and Ethiopia developed a reputation as the source of some of the world’s finest and most distinctive coffees, the wild coffees were left behind to be harvested often with little attention to quality and sold to traders locally at very low prices.
Farm Africa began engaging with the forest communities of Bale a decade ago, exploring ways for farmers to derive livelihood from the forests in ways that are both environmentally and economically sustainable.
Forest Management by the community
The outcome of Farm Africa’s pioneering work has been the development and launch of Participatory Forestry Management approach. Through this approach, Participatory Forest Management Co-operatives (PFMCs) are set up as business structures through which the farmers proactively manage the forest, the sustainable use of forest resources and forest regeneration under contractual arrangements between the communities and local authorities.
All the coffee in the forest grows naturally. There is no planting or pruning of the Wild Forest Coffees, and interventions are limited to an annual slashing of undergrowth transforming the way coffee is harvested, processed and taken to market.
Work on improving coffee quality and yield is a core component of Farm Africa’s initiative so farmers gain a higher income for a high value product. Previously coffee would be strip harvested and dried on the ground. Farm Africa has trained farmers to selectively harvest only ripe cherry. They have supported them to source bamboo racks to dry the cherry carefully in the sun, and to build clean stores where the dry cherry can be stored. Additionally, PFMCs have been able to see for themselves the requirements to maintain coffee value and to understand how the market works.
For the first time it is possible for farmers to be properly rewarded for their efforts to achieve the highest quality, and to have their coffee reach the market in their own names. For roasters this gives access to the unique Wild Forest Coffees and gives them actors in preserving and regenerating these incredible forests for present and future generations.
Gutiti and Hurufa PFMC
Ethiopia Longberry, Wild Varietals
Oct - December