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The Coffee

The Benti Nenka Washing Station is located in the heart of Guji with a total of 600 farmers delivering red cherries from surrounding areas. Located in, about 550 Km south of Addis Ababa, the Hambela Wamena woreda is home to a collection of smallholder farmers totaling 6,000 hectares of coffee. The average farm size in Guji is three hectares and producers cultivate a range of heirloom coffee varieties, including wild varietals originating from the neighboring Harenna forest.


Dega is a regional variety named after an indigenous tree. The wood of the Degatree omits a sweet, fragrant aroma, when burned for firewood. The Amharic word“dega” means “cool highland area”, that also describes the agro-ecologicalconditions where Dega coffee grows.

The Welisho varietal is a typical variety that is found in the highlands ofEthiopia. Welisho is similarly to Dega named after an indigenous tree. Welishoplant is distinguished by its large fruits, tall canopy, stiff stem, and long leaves.Due to the tree height, the fruits take longer time to mature.

The Farmer

Washing station: Benti Nenka

Manager: Gora

Founded: 2017

Altitude: 2100 - 2200

Zone: Guji

Region: Oromia

Sub Region: Hambella

Village: Benti Nenka

Number of farms: 600

Farm size:

Vegetation: Vegetables, False banana and pulse crops

Avg farm size: 0.5 - 3 ha

Soil type: Red clay loamy and fertile rich forest

Trees per hectare: 2800

Cherry yield per tree on average:5 - 6 kg

Average selling price of farmers per kilo cherries in 2020/2021 harvest: 24 Birr/kg

Average selling price of farmers per kilo cherries in 2021/2022 harvest: 49 Birr/kg


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 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 6 hours

Drying and handsorting

Coffee is then  piled up in layers which are 2cm in height and dried over a 11 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.