Ethiopia Gedeb Gotiti Grade Zero Washed – 28154 – 30.0 kg Box/Vacuum Pack – SPOT SHANGHAI

Position Spot

Bags 248

Warehouses Shanghai

About this coffee

Grower

763 producers organized around Banko Gotiti processing station

Altitude

1950 – 2100 masl

Variety

Indigenous landraces and cultivars

Soil

Vertisol

Region

Banko Gotiti kebele, Gedeb District, Gedeo Zone, Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region, Ethiopia

Process

Fully washed and dried on raised beds, and milled to zero defects

Harvest

October – January

Certification

Conventional

Coffee Background

The district of Gedeb takes up the south-eastern corner of Ethiopia’s Gedeo Zone—a narrow section of plateau dense with savvy farmers whose coffee is known as “Yirgacheffe”, after the zone’s most famous district. Gedeb, however, is a terroir, history, and community all its own that merits unique designation in our eyes. The region is a thriving market landscape that links commerce between the Guji and Gedeo Zones, and contains an expansive network of processing stations who often buy cherry from across zone borders.   Processors across Gedeb would argue (and we would agree) that their coffee profiles are not exactly Yirgacheffe, but something of their own. Cup profiles, in many cases produced closer to Guji than the rest of Yirgacheffe, are often the most explosive we see from anywhere in Ethiopia. Naturals tend to have perfume-like volatiles, and fully washed lots are often sparklingly clean and fruit candy-like in structure. Communities around Gedeb reach some of the highest growing elevations for coffee in the world and have a long history of arabica preservation and genetic diversity.  Banko Gotiti is a municipality located in northeast Gedeb close to the Guji border. It is a remote but impressively industrious area for coffee production. Up to a few years ago when coffee exports were allowed only limited channels, the vast majority of coffee grown in this area was either processed and exported by the Yirgacheffe Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (YCFCU), consolidated under wide-reaching regional cooperatives, or sold anonymously through the Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX). Today, however, in addition to the union coops, which are still going strong, there are increasing numbers of single farm owners and independent companies who are processing and exporting direct. It is an exciting time to be buying in Gedeb, where we expect to see new layers of coffee continuously unfold as its local industry accelerates.  Banko Gotiti washing station is one such private site. The station was originally constructed in 2010 and today is managed by Birhanemeskel Abera. Aside from producing assertive and tropical fully washed coffees, is also focused on achieving a diversity of processing and milling standards in order to iterate on local traditions and expand expectations of coffees from this area.   This “Grade Zero” selection comes from a collaborative effort between Royal and Banko Gotiti to design a near-perfect rendition of a top washed Gedeb. The processing, which just a few years ago was entirely experimental, begins just like a careful fully-washed, fermented 48 hours and washed under fresh water. Once dried, the coffee is treated to extra sorting steps at the dry mill, including multiple additional passes in the color sorter and a longer, slower hand-removal of imperfections. The idea is to present a better-than-Grade 1 result, hence the grade “0”. We want coffees like these to inspire roasters to consider new possibilities for Gedeb’s coffees and producer collaboration, as well as motivate producer groups to come up with innovative targets of their own. Southern Ethiopia has long been a place Royal has wanted to see surpass its (admittedly, ridiculously high) status quo, and each coffee like this is a small step in that direction.  Private processors like Banko Gotiti are a thing to behold. It’s a tough business being a private processor in Gedeo, as the sheer density of competition among washing stations tends to push cherry prices as high as double throughout a single harvest, and privates often don’t have the backing of a larger union to secure financing, regulate cherry prices, or bring export costs down with centralized milling and marketing. Successful private washing stations like Banko Gotiti, then, need to be not only standout quality processors to stay afloat; they must also be excellent business developers with connections and community standing, in order to continue winning the business of farmers and buyers alike, and stay afloat for the long term. Successful innovation and buyer collaboration is certainly one way to do so.