THE BIRTHPLACE OF COFFEE - ONE NATION. MANY COFFEES.
“Keffa,” from which the term “coffee” is derived, is the birthplace of coffee. To this day, the Keffa region in the southwestern part of Ethiopia remains one of the strongest coffee-producing regions in Ethiopia. Historians claim that coffee spread from Ethiopia to Egypt, and then to Yemen. The earliest credible evidence of either coffee drinking or knowledge of the coffee tree appears in the middle of the 15th century, in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen. By the 16th century, it had reached the rest of the Middle East, Persia, Turkey and Northern Africa. Coffee then spread to Italy and the rest of Europe, to Indonesia, and finally to the Americas.
As it has been since the 16th century, Ethiopia remains the largest producer of Arabica coffee beans in the world. At METAD, we are proud to carry on this noble tradition.
In addition to producing and processing our own coffees, METAD sources high-quality traceable coffee beans from other superior coffee-growing regions of Ethiopia and provides them to the international marketplace. We take the pain out of the end-to-end purchasing process. METAD’s Targeted Sourcing Program provides access to the best coffees that Ethiopia has to offer. These include conventional (non-certified) and certified (Fair Trade, Organic, Rainforest Alliance, Bird-Friendly, UTZ Certified “Good Inside”) coffees.
We work with farmers who produce the most recognized varieties, and we are committed to introducing varieties that are not as well known to the world market. Our sourcing capability is attractive to worldwide buyers who value traceability. While METAD can, upon request, source and deliver specific varieties of coffee beans not listed below, the main coffee growing regions of Ethiopian coffees we source include:
- Yirgacheffe™ – a highland grown coffee recognized for its distinct character, set apart by an exceptional citrus and floral flavor. It has a firm and fine acidity, with a viscous, round, creamy and mouthful tactile sensation. When processed naturally (sun-dried), it has a pleasant aftertaste. The bean is uniform, thick, medium to bold, blue in color, oval in shape and compact. This is the most well known washed Ethiopian coffee, especially in the United States.
- Sidamo™ – produces exceptional washed and natural coffee, with medium-pointed to pointed-firm acidity, medium to full tactile sensation and its own distinct flavor notes of spice and citrus. The bean is small to medium sized and green-gray to blue in color. Both washed and sun-dried (natural) processed.
- Harrar™ – famous worldwide for its distinctive, genuine mocha flavor and soft, smooth and round tactile sensation. The longberry and amber beans are thick and oval in shape, medium to large in size, and green to yellow-umber in color. Sun-dried processed only, it is produced in the eastern highlands and exported from Dire Dawa. It is regarded as one of the finest premium coffees.
- LimMu – with a lively medium to firm acidity and smooth to round tactile sensation, this coffee is well-known for its distinctive flavor. The bean has a uniform appearance, blue in color, medium to bold, thick in size and oblong to round in shape. Washed only, it is renowned for its good cup, sweet and spicy "wine-like" flavor and balanced body. It is highly sought by many roasters, especially in Europe and United States. It is one of the premium gourmet coffees worldwide.
- Jimma – represents the bulk of Ethiopian natural export coffee, often used in blends. It has medium acidity, and a good and pleasant body. The beans are medium to bold, oval and thick. Sun-dried processed only, it is the best known Ethiopian coffee within the industry and represents the bulk of Ethiopian coffee exports. This type covers a multitude of southwestern Ethiopian coffees, including Limu unwashed processed coffee, as well as Jimma specialty coffees. In many cases, these vast varietals are exported simply as “Jimma coffee.”
- Tepi/Bebeka – most often comes from the state-owned plantations of Tepi/Bebeka. This coffee has a soft and smooth acidity with some nutty and caramel notes, as well as a rich and rounded tactile sensation. The beans have a large, thick, wide center cut, pointed ends, less specific density, and have a green to gray appearance in color. Washed only, these coffees have less acidity, body and a soft flavor. They often help roasters achieve specific results in their blends.
- Nekempti/Gimbi – recognized for its full and fruity flavor, medium to pointed acidity and a medium to full tactile sensation. This coffee has its own distinct noting character of a fruity finish. The beans are generally medium in size, green to gray in color, and are washed and sun-dried (natural) processed. This coffee is an important part of many roasters’ blends, but can also be a gourmet single varietal.