FOCUS ON: Ethiopia

FOCUS ON: Ethiopia

Population; 102.4 Million    Capital City: Addis Ababa

Not only is Ethiopia the 5th largest coffee growing country in the world, but it also has the claim to fame as the original birthplace of coffee!

One theory is that the people of the nomadic Galla tribe first discovered the coffee plant and its invigorating properties.

Others believe the tale of Kaldi, a local goat herder, who noticed how jittery his goats became after eating the fruit from the coffee tree. He brought the coffee cherries to a local monastery were the monks thought they were the devil’s work and through them in the fire, which released a delightful aroma in the air and so coffee was born!

Whichever story you choose to believe at lease we know that many experts understand that the coffee tree was native to Ethiopia before it started to spread across the continents. So Ethiopia is the true birthplace of coffee.


Present Day

Ethiopia has a population of nearly 75 million people, many of whom struggle to make a living from their production and export of primary goods. 64% of the population do not have access to clean and safe water systems. Half the population live in economic poverty.  There are many reasons for this poverty, however, the combination of regional conflict and dependence on exporting primary agricultural products are often cited as obstacles to more inclusive sustainable growth.

Around 60% of foreign income comes from coffee, with an estimated 15 million of the population relying on some aspect of coffee production for their livelihood.

Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony 


In Ethiopian households, the coffee ceremony is conducted three times per day by a female member of the family. She typically begins by spreading fresh flowers and grass on the floor or ground, while burning incense. Then, she roasts the coffee beans in a long-handled pan until they’re black and oily.

The hostess then grinds the coffee with a mortar and pestle, and adds it to water that’s boiling in a coffeepot called a jebena. When it’s finished boiling, she holds the jebena high in the air and pours the coffee into small cups (a high, gentle pour traps most of the grounds in the bottom of the jebena). Often, each cup is served with a heaping spoonful of sugar and a snack of fresh popcorn. Guests typically drink three rounds of coffee, using the same grounds. The third cup is said to convey a blessing.



Altitude :1,500 metres above sea level

Roasting Style; Medium/light

Process; Washed

Varietal: Heirloom

Situated in the heart of Ethiopia in the Sidamo district, this coffee has been grown by many small farmers who collectively bring their coffee to get processed at their nearest washing station.
The farms are situated near Lake Abaya which is known for it’s population of hippos and crocodiles.

This is a great example of a typical washed process Ethiopian coffee.  Intense floral aromas are accompanied by a delicious fresh peach flavour and a delicate backnote of pink grapefruit. The body is light and the acidity is medium.
Sidamo makes a super interesting espresso and is perfect for a light afternoon brew. This is a coffee which will surely impress!

Did you know?

Just smelling coffee can wake you up. A group of scientists reported that
simply inhaling the aroma of coffee can alter the activity of some genes
in the brain, reducing the effects of sleep deprivation. When you do drink
that cup of coffee, caffeine reaches your blood in approx 10 min or less.