Ethiopia Limmu - Sheka - Grade 1 Organic RFA Natural

Ethiopia Limmu - Sheka - Grade 1 Organic RFA Natural

Ethiopia Limmu - Sheka - Grade 1 Organic RFA Natural

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Regular price $11.01
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Cupping Notes: Chocolate, strawberry, rhubarb, dried blueberry, big body

About This Coffee

Coffee was first grown on the farm in Masha in 2014. The planting was phased over 4 years with each yield producing increasingly good yields. Manual practices were used for land preparation (slashing, thinning out shade areas, removing trash), harvesting and processing. The farm is managed by an Estate Manager with separate divisions for coffee, spices and honey.  Masha is owned by former Olympic champion and world record holding long distance runner, Haile Gebrselassie. The 1,500 hectare coffee estate in Masha is highly conducive for growing coffee with its high-quality Nitisols soil types, rich vegetation and gentle topography. Situated within the UNESCO biosphere reserve of Sheka at an altitude of 1,680 - 1,875m, the estate has an exquisite air quality and one of highest rainfalls (1,800 - 2,200mm) in Ethiopia. The estate is bordered by rivers on three sides and its dense forest areas ensure that the area is one of the richest in terms of biodiversity.

Country of Origin:               Ethiopia

Coffee Grade:                       Grade 1

Plant Species:                       Arabica

Processing:                           Natural/Dry Processed

Varietals:                               Ethiopia Heirloom Varietals

Region:                                  Sheka Zone

Farm Name:                          Masha Farm

Growing Altitude:                1500-1900 MASL

Certifications:                       Rainforest Alliance, Organic

History of Coffee in Ethiopia 

Coffee is ancient in Ethiopia, but coffee farming is not. By the end of the 9th Century coffee was actively being cultivated in Ethiopia as food, but probably not as a beverage. It was the Arab world that developed brewing. Even as coffee became an export for Ethiopia in the late 1800’s, Ethiopian coffee was the result of gathering rather than agricultural practices. A hundred years ago, plantations, mostly in Harar, were still the exception, while “Kaffa” coffee from the southwest was still harvested wild. In 1935, William Ukers wrote: “Wild coffee is also known as Kaffa coffee, from one of the districts where it grows most abundantly in a state of nature. The trees grow in such profusion that the possible supply, at a minimum of labor in gathering, is practically unlimited. It is said that in south-western Abyssinia there are immense forests of it that have never been encroached upon except at the outskirts.” 

Growing Coffee in Ethiopia

As the birthplace of coffee, Ethiopia is home to more species of coffee plants than any place on earth, much of it still growing wild, and much of it still undiscovered. All Ethiopian coffee is Arabica and at least 150 varieties are commercially cultivated. Traditionally, these have simply been labelled as “heirloom varietals”; however, this is changing as the Jimma Agricultural Research Center works to identify species. Although there are a few estates in Ethiopia, 95% of coffee is grown by small land holders in a wide variety of environments, including “coffee forests” where coffee grows wild and is harvested by the local people. All specialty grade Ethiopian Coffee is grown above 4,000 feet and most above 6,000. In the highlands of Sidamo and Yirgacheffe, coffee can grow above 7,000 feet.

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