Ethiopia is the country where coffee originated and the only place in the world where you can find plants in a wild state. For thousands of years families have roasted berries, ground them in a mortar and offered coffee to guests, following a solemn ritual involving symbolic displays of hospitality, friendship and respect.
The preparation of coffee―an integral part of daily Ethiopian life―is an atmospheric traditional ceremony covering all social classes: guests are welcomed by a woman in charge and a carpet of freshly cut grass and flowers spread before a small table holding the traditional, small, handle-less cups. The shelled coffee beans are washed and roasted until they are the right color and then shown to the guests. A coffee aroma permeates the air, aided by delicate hand movements. The powder obtained after grinding the beans in a mortar is then poured into a jabana, the traditional coffee pot, full of boiling water. The first coffee (abol), already sugared, is served first to the oldest person. The next two (tona and baraka) are then made by adding water to the jabana. The three coffees are served with corn, wheat or toasted barley.
The Harenna forest, one of the largest in Ethiopia, is situated in the mountains of the magnificent Bale National Park, 350 km south of the capital Addis Ababa. Here, at an altitude of around 1800 meters, an arabica coffee grows spontaneously in the shade of tall trees. It has an outstanding quality potential that has been little studied or developed. For the small farmers living in the area, selling coffee is the main source of income.
The gatherers harvest the ripe fruit by hand, an operation that is often obstructed by baboons.
The berries do not require stripping or washing, which are crucial stages for the coffee from Presidia in Latin America. It is a real “natural” coffee: after the berries are harvested they are simply dried in the sun on suspended nets.
In 2011, the Presidium strengthened the structures for drying coffee, promoted it on the local and international market and provided new commercial outlets to the producers’ associations. The producers’ associations became members of the Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, a commercial cooperative through which the Presidium Coffee will be exported. Harenna Forest Wild Coffee received the Slow Food Presidia logo in 2012.
Harenna Forest, Dollo-Mena department, Bale National Reserve, Oromia region
Csc (Caffè Speciali Certificati)
The Italian coffee roasters who belong to the project can use the Slow Food Presidium brand on their packaging. If you would like to know where to fi nd roasters that sell the coffee of this Presidium as single-origin or mixed blend, consult the Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity website: www.slowfoodfoundation.org
Tahir Malim Saliya
tel. +251 912825912/+251 946570684
Tayib Ebrahim Wako
tel. +251 920175567
Asmelash Dagne Datiko
Tel. +251 910076630