The members of the Biftu Gudina cooperative grow their coffee amidst the dense forests that surround the town of Agaro, Ethiopia. The group, and its respective washing stations, were established in 2012 as part of a Technoserve project* aimed at increasing transparency within East African coffee production.
Presently, Biftu Gudina is represented by the Kata Muduga Cooperative Union, a group that works to improve the lives of coffee farmers by providing market access and negotiating fair and sustainable prices for green coffee. Kata Muduga also represents many other cooperatives surrounding Agaro including the Duromina, Nano Challa, and Yukro cooperatives.
With nearly 200 members Biftu Gudina is emerging as one of the premiere groups in the region. Its members operate on small parcels of land, often referred to as “garden” style farms, where they grow a variety of crops in addition to coffee.
*Technoserve is an international non-profit organization whose mission is to combat poverty in developing nations by creating ties between people and (1) information systems, (2) capital investments, and (3) world markets.
Producers harvest their cherries by hand to determine ripeness before delivering them to one of Biftu Gudina’s two centrally located washing stations. Cherries are then sorted by density before their fruit is removed using a mechanical de-pulper.
Biftu’s washing stations are equipped with state-of-the-art Penagos eco-pulpers, which not only remove the coffee’s outer layers of fruit, but the majority of their mucilage as well. This all but eliminates the need for any sort of wet fermentation, leading to “clean” tasting coffees that possess little to no negative or interfering flavors.
After fruit removal the coffee is soaked in clean water for 3-10 hours, in order to remove any leftover debris. From there the coffee is dried in two phases. First, in shade until the surface moisture has dissipated (roughly 6 hours) and second, under direct sunlight for a period of 10 days. This two-phase approach, prevents coffee from drying too quickly, preserving the flavor profile and extending the coffees’ usable lifespan.
The admirable combination of advanced machinery and attention to detail has lead to increased premiums for the members of Biftu Gudina, and thus a steep rise in overall membership. We look forward to continue sourcing from Biftu Gudina in the future as the cooperative continues to innovate and grow.
Brewing Biftu Gudina
Delicate, clean, and complex, this lot is a true expression of washed coffee from Agaro.
Pour Over preparation will yield a cup with prominent floral aromatics and a light yet silky mouthfeel. Expect subtle fruit notes, such as raspberry and apricot, to be met by the sweetness of wildflower honey, and the refreshing qualities of lime-soda.
The AeroPress will produce a fruitful coffee, with a wide array of stone-fruit flavors, and once again a sparkling soda-like acidity. As the cup cools sweetness intensifies, as does this coffee’s complex floral and tea-like notes.