|Processing: Fully washed
|Crop year: 2018
|Variety: Cupping score: 88
|Delicate | Floral | Blueberry | Tea Rose | Lemongrass
|Refreshing fruits, blueberries, lemongrass. Delicate profile with tea rose florals.
Origin: Hunkute Cooperative
Sidamo is famous for its clean, floral, and citric washed coffees and “high quality” sundried with genuine and unique red berry flavors. The Sidama zone covers a large area with very different growing conditions. You can find highland areas of forest coffees in remote places as well as dense production in the well-known areas like Aleto, Wondo, Darra, and Dale. There are currently about 50 Cooperatives in Sidama with a total of 90,000 members. Natural sundried coffees are common, but the majority of the coffee is washed. There are mainly small family plots of both recently planted trees of improved varietals and traditional old varieties. The variety is called Sidamo type. Organic fertilizer is common, pruning less common. All the cooperatives in Ethiopia belong to a Union, in this case the Sidamo Union, that sell and export the coffee. They also take care of dry milling and grading before export.
Hunkute is another Cooperative in Sidamo with extreme altitude and a very strong management. They opened washing station number two in 2012, and are consistently producing quality. Coffees from both sites are marketed as Hunkute. The coffee is marketed and sold through the Sidamo Cooperative Union. The Union is also responsible for the dry milling, grading, bagging and export.
About 1912 smallholder farmers delivering tiny amounts of cherries daily to the wet miller.
On average farmers are having a farm size of less than 1 hectares. Most coffees are organic by default. Organic compost is common, pruning less common. A farmer can typically have less than 1500 trees pr hectar, and 1 tree is typically producing cherries equal to less than 100 – 200 grams of green coffee.
A mix of local variety’s. In the area they have local cultivar called Sedancho. But it will be a mix of these as well as native coffee of forest origin transferred to family smallholder plots. The varieties are referred to collectively as Ethiopian Heirloom, which is a myriad of local native Typica hybrids and new improved varietals based on the old strains.
Production process (washed):
Pulper: Traditional Haghes disc pulper
Fermentation: 24 – 36 hours wet.
Washed and graded in channels: Yes
Soaking: about 24 Hours in clean water.
Drying time:10-12 days
Whole ripe cherries are hand sorted for unripes and overripes by the farmers before they go into production. They are pulped by a disk pulper and graded in the pulper by density: The parchment is then fermented under water for 24-48 hours, depending on the weather conditions. After which graded in the washing channels by water flow that separates the coffee by density. Its then soaked 12-24 hrs in fresh, clean water before it’s moved to the drying tables
Skin drying the first hours unders shade. The parchments is dried in the sun for about 10-15 days, depending on the weather conditions, on African drying beds. Coffees are covered in shade nets during midday and at night.
Volcanic deposits, rich in minerals and nitrogen.
As a cooperative you are allowed to sell the coffees directly as a fully trace able product and can buypass the ECX (Ethiopian Commodity Exchange). They are always marketed and sold through a Cooperative Union. Generally they will relate to the Cooperative Union representing the zone and area where they operate. Typically, a Cooperative in Limu is sold and exported by the Limu Union, In Oromia the Oromia Union, Sidama the Sidamo Union and so on.
This is basically how the supply chain works for the Cooperative coffees:
- The family members of the smallholder farmers are picking small amounts of coffee that they will sell and deliver either at a collection site or directly to the washing station. They are free to deliver the coffee to the highest bidder no matter if it is a Cooperative or a private producer.
- The farmers will get paid in full based on the currant cherry prices in the area that day. In many cases the Cooperatives will pay them a divident as a second payment when the coffee is sold at a premium.
- The Cooperative washingstation will in some cases start a thorough cherry selection and sort and handpick cherries as well as flotation and screening etc if they aim at producing higher grades such as grade 1&2.
- They will process the coffee according to their production plans either as washed or naturals depending on their access to water and the time of the season.
- The Cooperative washing station will deliver the dried parchment to a local ECX warehouse that will grade the coffees accordingly. There are many different grades such as Grade 1 – Grade 5 depending on the physical qualities as well as the flavor profile.
- The coffee gets a ”lable” based on the region and the quality before it’s offered directly to buyers through the Cooperative Unions.
- After grading the Cooperative Unions will in most cases move the coffee to their position in Addis Ababa or other warehouses they might use.
- The Cooperative Unions will offer us samples to cup after they have stock lots in their position. Generally they offer lots to cup in 100 bag chunks. And we can pick and choose coffees among different Cooperatives Washingstations from one Cooperative Union.
- Managing lot separation, great processing and transparency is key when we select our Cooperatives and producing partners.
To be as much on top of things as we can we have our country manager Seife Tuloskorpi full time on the ground and a partnership that gives us the opportunity to manage a cupping lab with three members of staff in Addis. The coffee buyers Joanne and Morten are frequently visiting throughout the season. Generally, this is from November through to March, at least once a month and spending a considerable amount of time understanding how the season in that given year is developing.
This involves meeting with our producers and export partners and traveling throughout the different regions during the processing, later as coffees become available we are cupping both samples from the beginning of the harvest and throughout. In this way we can early on identify areas and wet mills that are showing potential. We cup through initial rounds of samples and make preliminary selections of the coffees that have value to us, these coffees are then cupped in a multiple of further rounds. Both in cuppings showing a selection from a specific region and also cuppings where we look at all of the coffees for that period that we are buying from Ethiopia.
In this way the coffees we decide to buy are cupped and assessed in a way that gives us good insight into the cup profile and quality, as well as the consistency of that particular lot.
|No. of farms
|No. of members