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The Coffee

Aroresa is a privately-owned washing station located in the Nensebo region in the West Arsi locality in Ethiopia’s renowned coffee zone, Sidamo.

The majority of farmers grow organically on tiny plots of land, which average just 2–5 hectares in size. Coffee is their main cash crop alongside food crops such as corn, grain and bananas, under the shade of native Birbira, Wanza, and Acacia trees. We've been contracting from this station consistently for a number of years as the quality continues to develop.

As of 2018, our supplier, Testi, launched a quality improvement project at each of the 10 washing stations that they own and operate. Their Premium Cherry Selection Project ensures that best practices are used for growing, harvesting and processing the coffee cherry. Not only does that enable them to pay out farmer premiums year after year, but also, with the support of importing partners, develop social projects.

The Farmer

Washing station: Aroresa

Station manager: Eskedar Nega

Founded: 2009

Altitude: 1800-2150 masl

Zone: Sidamo/West Arsi

Region: Nensebo

Village: Bensa

Number of farms: 800

Geolocation coordinates: 38*51’2’’ E 6*33’20’’ N

Vegetation: Semi-forest and garden

Avg farm size: 0.5 - 1 Ha

Soil type: Rich and fertile red soil

Trees per hectare: 1800-2400

Cherry yield per tree on average: 4 kgs

Average selling price of farmers per kilo of cherries in 2019/2020 harvest: 23 birr

Average selling price of farmers per kilo of cherries in 2019/2020 harvest: 55 birr


Post-Harvest Processing - Washed

Harvest and cherry selection

Cherries are collected manually and hand sorted later.

Pulping and pre-grading

The cherries are pulped by a traditional Agaarde Discpulper. Skin and fruit pulp are removed before the machine grades the parchment in water as 1st or 2nd quality, determined by density.


Wet fermentation for 48-72 hours

Washing and grading in channels

Coffees are washed in channels, and graded in water by density. The lower density (lower quality) will float and are removed, leaving only the denser and therefore higher quality beans which are separated as higher grade lots.

Soaked under clean water

After fermentation, soaking takes place for 2 hours

Drying and handsorting

Coffee is then  piled up in layers which are 2cm in height and dried over a 10 day period then followed by hand sorting for 2-4 hours.

Post-Harvest Processing - Natural

Harvest and cherry selection

Cherries are collected manually and hand sorted later.

Sorting and pre-sorting

The cherries will then be moved to the drying beds. Underripe and defective cherries will be sorted out by hand during the first days.


When producing naturals the level of fermentation will be determined by the thickness and layer during the first days of drying in combination with temperature. Fermentation is slower at higher altitudes as temperatures are generally lower.

Drying and handsorting

The cherries are dried in a relatively thin layer at about 3-4 cm the first days. They will build up the layers to 6-10 cm after a few days. The coffees are moved frequently and they will be covered during the hottest hours of the day to protect the cherries from intense sunlight, then again at night to protect against humidity. This will also help improve quality as the coffee is rested and the drying more homogeneous. Drying naturals at these altitudes can take up to 20 days.