Flavor Profile Lemon, peach, jasmine, brown sugar
Out of stock
Smallholder farmers organized around the Wayicho Cooperative
Wayicho district, Sidama Zone, Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s Region, Ethiopia
Fully washed and dried on raised beds
October - December
Fair Trade | Organic
Wayicho is one of the primary cooperatives belonging to the Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (SCFCU), one of Ethiopia’s largest and best-known exporting organizations. SCFCU is robust; there are 53 member cooperatives in the union and over 80,000 member households throughout the Sidama Zone. Harvest in Sidama occurs slightly earlier than in the more southern zones of Gedeo and Guji, and as a result the fully washed lots from here are usually the year’s very first top quality arrivals from anywhere in Ethiopia.
Wayicho carries out activities that often go unnoticed but are crucial for small producers, including training producers in best organic practices and investing in basic infrastructure needs like road improvements and establishing local warehouses. SCFCU focuses on establishing a certification process for local cooperatives, creating micro-credit for producers and investing in social programs on a larger scale. Environmental training programs, healthcare initiatives, life insurance, and educational opportunities are just some of the ways SCFCU strives to improve the quality of life for coffee producers and their families.
Farmers in this area are truly smallholders, averaging less than one hectare of coffee cultivation each, in which they also produce vegetables for the household and local sale.
Many of the coops today belonging to the Sidama Union began as independent processing groups sometime between the 1970s and 1990s, for lack of a greater export network. This lasted until the late 90s and relied largely on a system of local collectors and buyers, who would then deliver consolidated cherry to processors or export auctions. The formation of cooperative unions in Ethiopia allowed for voting power and higher farm returns from the direct exportation that unions would be capable of. Certifications, as well, easily earned through the longtime organic methods of Ethiopia’s smallholders and a conscious business plan, could be secured for price protection and marketing purposes, helping vast populations of smallholders gain small but meaningful leverage in the global marketplace that remains to this day.