Honey & Rose

That feeling when it’s still a little brisk outside, and you can’t help but sit in the bright sunshine, letting it warm you after the long dark winter. That is what this coffee is — it’s highly anticipated springtime, finally right around the corner. This cup contains honey sticky sweetness and rose; it’s balanced with a hint of refreshing bitters.

2018 was a big year for Ethiopian coffee producers as requirements for the ECX (Ethiopian Commodity Exchange) changed, no longer requiring producers to sell their coffee directly to the exchange. The Ethiopian government now allows for direct sales to importers, like Nordic Approach. Additionally, the removal of these requirements allows for full control of supply chain and traceability where it once was not possible.

Isreal Degba, the owner of the communal wet mill Qore, has previously focused on quantity under the old ECX requirements, whereas in just the last couple of years, he has been anticipating this change and has focused on improved quality and traceability. Isreal has purchased new flotations systems for several of the wet mills he owns, has invested in a new warehouse in Addis, and is working towards Rainforest Alliance certification. Additionally, the farmers he works with have the opportunity to undergo further training, second payouts, and can receive coffee seedlings to increase the coffee varieties found on the farms in the areas around the communal mills. Isreal has worked closely in partnership with Nordic Approach to continue this focus on care and quality in the last couple of years.

That sweetheart honey processing: During the 2018 season, hundreds of smallholder farmers delivered their small harvest to the Qore washing station on a daily basis. When the cherries were delivered they went through initial sorting using a newly implemented flotation system before they were hand-sorted. The coffee was then depulped and graded based on density. The denser beans were then labeled for honey production. At this stage all of the mucilage remained on the coffee, meaning this coffee could be categorized as a black honey. The coffee then was spread out in a fairly thick layer under the sun, being covered at night, without much movement or rotation so that it dried slowly, intentionally allowed to become sticky and stuck together. After the initial drying days the coffee then needed to be moved and cracked apart. It then dried on raised beds for approximately another 20 days, being sorted during that time for defects.

  • Qore Wet Mill -- Kochere, Ethiopia

  • Isreal Degfa & Kochere smallholder farmers

  •  collectively Heirloom, including but not limited to Certo, Wolisho, and local native Typica hybrids

  •  Honey

  •  2018

  • 1998

  • 1800-2100 masl

  • smallholder farmers association

  • Sandy Loom, grown amongst Wanza, berbera, Sasa and Shola shade trees.

  • 3000

  • 250g

  • Light

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