Taking us into our third year of working with Snap Coffee, we’re thrilled to welcome back a coffee from Danche washing station, hailing from the small kebele of Chelbesa in Ethiopia’s Gedeo Zone.
Around 600 smallholder coffee farmers in the Chelbesa kebele have contributed towards this lot. The varieties being grown are Wolisho, Dega & Kurume, which are tended to completely organically in a semi-forest system. Each farmer has between 0.5 and 2 hectares planted with coffee, amidst bananas and natural shade trees, with 1,500 to 2,400 coffee trees per hectare. Each tree only produces around 3kg of coffee fruit per season, which is delivered on foot or by mule to the newly built Danche washing station.
The Washing Station & Their Approach
Situated at 2,160 metres the Danche wet mill was only established in 2019 and is managed by Girum Assefa. It is one of two sites that SNAP Coffees are operating in the Chelbesa kebele, the other being Worka washing station. After depulping the received coffee cherries using an Agaarde disc pulper the coffee is fermented under cool water in ceramic tiled tanks for 72 hours, before washing and grading in long channels.
The seeds are effectively graded by density in these channels and will be graded again once fully dried when the quality is refined at the dry mill using vibrating density sorting tables. It makes for a reliable product for us to roast, as the seeds are small and compact yet very dense, allowing an efficient transfer of heat through each seed and the entire batch.
Snap Coffee was established in 2008 by Negusse Debela Weldyes and the group are responsible for the running and operation of several coffee washing stations including Refisa and Worka Chelbesa, both of which will also feature in our coffee range this year. Abenezer Asfaw oversees logistics and supply chain mapping, and is the liaison for Tropiq, which is Nordic Approach’s sister company with a team on the ground in Ethiopia year-round.
Abenezer and his team oversee the processing facilities but also take on the task of dispensing agricultural knowledge to their contributing farmers. They are committed to recycling waste by-products from coffee processing at each of their stations where they have also built schools and provided them with computing equipment from the other arm of their business which is in electronics. They intend to improve the roads to streamline access to the washing stations as well as build health clinics to provide access to better healthcare for their contributing farmers as well.
Lots from the most recent harvest have been dry milled at Snap’s new processing and warehousing facility, which has just been fitted out. This has afforded the group even more control over the final exportable product that we get to work with, leading to improved consistency and uniformity.
Chelbesa, Gedeo, SNNPR, Ethiopia
Wonderfully complex & generous. Aromas of violets & cacao complement lively sherbet-like flavours of guava & blackcurrant and a syrupy mouthfeel.