The Wolichu Wachu washing station was founded in 2017 and serves 4,500 local smallholder producers in and around the town of Haro Wachu, in the Urga district of Guhi in the Oromia region of Ethiopia. The average producer here farms on half a hectare of land, and delivers coffee in cherry form to the washing station, where it is processed as necessary.
Washed lots like this one are sorted in cherry upon delivery, then depulped and fermented underwater for 48–72 hours. The coffee is then washed and given an additional soak for 8–16 hours before being spread on raised beds to dry for 9–12 days, on average. This lot is a Special Prep, meaning that extra care was given to the coffee from start to finish, at the request of Cafe Imports. Not only were the cherries vigorously sorted, but also throughout the processing and drying, beans were removed by hand that were seen to be defective, damaged, tainted, or otherwise imperfect.
According to the washing station manager, 90 percent of the coffee delivered to the factory is Bourbon, and 10 percent is Typica: While these are two varieties better-known in Central and South America, the same terms are used colloquially in Ethiopia to describe certain coffee-berry-disease-resistant cultivars. The Ethiopian "Bourbon" and "Typica" varieties are typically genetically removed from the ones found elsewhere around the world.
For more information about coffee production in Ethiopia, visit our Ethiopia Origin Page.