Today Ethiopia celebrates its national holiday, Patriots’ Victory Day. This reminded us again of one of our favorite coffee destinations.
What is our connection with Ethiopia? It is built with many aromatic specialty coffees that we have already drunk and it is nourished by promises for many more great flavors from coffee’s birthplace…
Not only in Ethiopia they believe that coffee is their bread. We at Dabov Specialty Coffee also believe in this. Thanks to coffee, we have bread on our table and we manage to contribute, albeit a little, to the fact that thousands of specialty coffee producers around the world have bread on their own.
Dabov Specialty Coffee’s catalog is never short of Ethiopian coffee. And how could it be otherwise !? You, as well as we, love the rich fruity coffee taste of the biggest producer in Africa. And we are lucky that we manage to find really great specialty coffees every year, given that half of the country’s coffee production goes to the local market. That is why we rely on our trusted partners.
Moplaco + Dabov – specialty coffee and a special connection
Since 2015 we have been working with Heleana Georgalis and her farm Moplaco. Moplaco stands for Mocca plantation Company, as Harrar coffee is known for the distinguished Mocca flavour, and at that time the company owed 1000 ha of land in the heart of Harrar. In Addis Abeba, Moplaco operates in a facility of more than 4,000 square meters, two separate stores, each process either washed coffee or sundried coffee. Modern machines, two electronic sorters, and an obsession allow the company to process up to twenty metric tons a day. Women make all finishing touches by carefully handpicking the coffee, to ensure optimum quality.
Jordan Dabov usually visits Moplaco in December to see how the harvest gathering is progressing and how the new coffee was processed. This is how our plan what to by next year starts to form usually.
Moplaco survived a difficult 2020
Heleana and her workers survived a difficult 2020. Not only because of the pandemic of the new Covid-19, but also because of the protests after the murder of a local activist. Unfortunately, the situation in the country remains extremely difficult, threatening the lives of both Heleana and the millions of other larger and smaller coffee producers.
There is a tiny number of farms that grow coffee in Ethiopia. In all regions, processing stations work on the same principle. In Moplaco, they have their own processng station. Coffee from the farms own plantations passes though dry process and then dries on African beds. The rest of the production arrives from small farmers who grow garden coffee and then passes through wet process to ensure a cleaner taste in the cup.
More than 50% of the coffee is garden coffee. About 25% is semi-forest. Between 15 and 20% is wild coffee. The remaining 10% come from farms with their own plantations.
Moplaco owns plantations and supports small producers
Moplaco has both its own plantations and monitors the Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX), which was established in 2008. Now 90% of the coffee produced in the country passes through the exchange. There specialists and byuers taste it and evaluate its qualities and flavor characteristics. Through this exchange, even very small producers have an access to foreign buyers. And farms like Moplaco, which are the first to notice high-quality green beans and offer a fair price to its producers, are the bridge between these coffees and the world.
In Moplaco they believe in giving back to the local community. The farm supports two schools in the areas where its plantations are located – in Yirgacheffe, is the Adame school and in Sidamo, is the Segera school. For both, the farm accepts donations to pay for school supplies, uniforms, and even running water. 1,200 students attend daily the Segera school.
Moplaco also organizes barista courses and trainings for women from its community. They do this because women are the majority of the workforce in the coffee industry in Ethiopia. By improving their skills, the farm gives them a chance for a better life through professional realization.
Dabov + Cup of Excellence Ethiopia – more specialty coffee and a special connection
Due to the pandemic, our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov was unable to visit Ethiopia last year. But we have given you the unique chance to taste the 28 coffee finalists in the first Ethiopian Cup of Excellence! Do you remember that it took place despite the complicated situation and remote cupping sessions of the finalists’? The members of the jury cupped in their own roasteries and laboratories around the world! We hope that the fact that the amount of $ 1,348,690 in online auction revenue improved the record of the El Salvador COE auction in 2011, when $ 830,245 was gathered, will encourage even more farmers to step on the difficult path of specialty coffee.
And you can learn more about COE Ethiopia and 28 interesting facts about Ethiopian coffee from our article.
Dabov + Project Origin
Ona Coffee owner and 2015 barista champion Sasha Sestic is the creator of Project Origin. At Project Origin they work directly with famers. Furthermore, they choose to work with farmers, exporters, and cooperatives with a positive attitude towards sustainability. They build relationships all over the world, source great coffees, and also experiment, research and share knowledge about improving farming practices in order to keep pushing quality standard higher. From each bag or box of coffee they sell, they allocate money to the Project Origin Fund. The money is used to facilitate a variety of project in the different countries they work in. They use these funds in the communities or farms they work with in any number of ways. And we have brought to you Ethiopia Cochere in 2016 from the Kochere farm in the Yirgacheffe region.