Easter Coffee Gugi Alaka
Easter Coffee Guji Alaka Hambela Natural Forest Coffee is named for the kebele, or village, where the coffee is harvested. The growers from the Alaka kebele bring their cherries to Metad’s Hambela Alaka washing station in Guji for further processing.
Metad developed their Out-growers Program in 2013. After World War II, the Ethiopian Emperor awarded Muluemebet Emiru, the first African female pilot and family matriarch, with land in the Guji and Sidama zones. This land would become the Hambela Coffee Estate that is owned and operated by Metad. Metad has strengthened the local community with employment opportunities, including a workforce that is over seventy percent women; educational opportunities, including a state-of-the-art elementary school with more than four hundred students; and healthcare for employees. Metad was also first to partner with Grounds for Health to implement a successful cervical cancer screening program for women within coffee growing communities.
This coffee is a testament to their quality-forward focus. Metad is a family run business, with coffee at their roots for generations. They wanted to invest in and support nearby coffee growing communities through this program, which has grown to over 6,500 members across both the Hambela and Gedeb regions. There are currently 14 farmer associations, named after their kebele, with 7 in each region. Growers who are part of the program receive training from Metad’s team from the start. They are provided free seedlings and professional guidance at every stage of production, as well as pre and post harvest training to continue their professional development.
This coffee from the Alaka kebele is grown at an elevation between 1900 and 2250 meters. It is a Natural process coffee, dried on raised beds. An Organic coffee, Metad has certified not only its own farms and processing plants but also the farms of those participating in the out-grower’s program.
The Hambela farm is located a little more than 400 km south of Addis Ababa in the Oromo region, in the Guji appellation. It was created by Metad in 2013 and is spread over 200 hectares, covered by a dense forest. It is a forest where endemic species and trees grow, some of which are extremely old. It also where Metad collects cherries from coffee trees. Both Metad and Belco (Ponaire’s direct supplier), are very aware of the importance of preserving this natural heritage, which is an additional source of value for the coffee produced here. It is above all by protecting the local know-how of the farmers who create it that the environment will be maintained.
Metad currently collects coffee produced by 3,200 farmers, members of 7 different associations, attached to this farm. They all work small, densely forested plots by hand at an altitude of about 2,000 metres. Metad operates a very precise traceability system.