|Notes||Blueberry, mango and cherry cinnamon|
The producer group known as "Idido, Yirgacheffe" operates under the "Ama Project," the project was established in 2023 with the primary objective of supporting women farmers and fostering women's empowerment within their respective communities. The history of this group is rooted in its commitment to uplifting the roles and contributions of women in agricultural endeavors. Situated in Idido, Yirgacheffe, this group serves as a pivotal consolidation point for its members' produce.
Ama provides extensive support to its members, including the implementation of the "Ama Commitment Income Diversification Scheme." This initiative aims to enhance the financial well-being of members by offering training, financial assistance, and necessary equipment. These efforts collectively work towards improving the livelihoods of women farmers and promoting gender equity in the agricultural landscape.
While Ama and its associated farmers hold no certifications, the commitment to organic farming is evident. The cooperative has opted for organic practices, although official certification has not been pursued due to the considerable costs associated with verification.
Amarech Ararso, is the producer of this lot her name means "she became beautiful." Her farm and processing station is located in Hada and plays an essential role in the cooperative's activities.
Amarech Ararso sources cherries from local farmers and processes them in-house. The farm spans 2 hectares and stands at an elevation of 2050 meters, fostering favourable conditions for cultivating high-quality coffee beans.
Throughout the harvest season (November to January), Amarech employs 40 seasonal workers in addition to its 5 permanent employees. The farm's cultivation practices involve cultivating coffee under the shade of false banana trees, embracing organic methods. Despite the absence of formal certification, the coffee is meticulously handpicked during the harvest by skilled seasonal workers.
Following harvesting, the coffee cherries undergo a specific processing regimen. The cherries are fermented in plastic barrels for seven days and then subjected to a drying period of 15-20 days. Post-drying, the coffee is stored within an on-site warehouse before being transported to the Addis Ababa processing facility.
The journey of the coffee towards export involves being processed and dried before reaching the Moplaco dry mill located in Gerji, Addis Ababa. From there, the coffee is transported via train to Djibouti, facilitating its export to international markets.
The cooperative's endeavors extend beyond the realm of coffee production, encompassing economic, social, and governance aspects. The "Ama Commitment Income Diversification Scheme" serves as a prime example of their social initiatives. Furthermore, this year Ephtah Coffee's contributed with 250,000ETB to build new drying beds to adds to the existing ones.
In terms of economic transactions, farmers receive immediate payment of 60% upon delivering their produce. The remaining portion is disbursed when the exporter settles with the suppliers after marketing the lots.
Notably, Amarech, the primary supplier, received a prefunding of 8 million ETB from Ephtah Coffee.
Challenges faced by the cooperative include navigating high inflation rates, governmental bureaucracy, and interference. The recent surge in cherry prices resulted from the influx of exporters vying for foreign currency.
Looking to the future, Ama's "Commitment Income Diversification Scheme" is poised for expansion, and plans are underway to open a shop in Addis Ababa where women can sell their handicrafts. Additionally, the farmers associated with the cooperative cultivate false banana to produce Kocho, a local food product.
Amarech's personal journey reflects the resilience and strength of women in rural Ethiopia. Married at the age of 14, she has overcome challenges and emerged as a successful entrepreneur with a family of ten children and six grandchildren so far.
In summary, Ama and its associated farmers in Idido, Yirgacheffe, have established a cooperative committed to promoting gender equality, sustainable practices, and community development. Through their efforts, they contribute to both the local economy and the international coffee market, embodying the spirit of empowerment and progress..