Gesha Village Estate fetches record price paid for Ethiopian Coffee
On 28 June, Gesha Village Coffee Estate, a 400-hectare farm growing Gesha-variety coffee in Ethiopia’s West Omo Zone, held its 6th global auction and received record results. The top lot sold for $254 per pound, thought to be the highest price ever paid for coffee not just from Ethiopia but all of Africa.
The auction included 26 carefully selected coffee lots with participating coffee buyers from Japan, China, Taiwan, South Korea, Australia, Europe and USA bidding at the electronic auction. With a total revenue of $283,481.33 USD, and an average price of $82.42, this is a record for any coffee estate outside of Panama.
In 2012, Adam Overton and Rachel Samuel started Gesha Village with co-founder Willem Boot, to follow their dream of owning a coffee farm in Ethiopia. They have worked closely with the Meanit people (the indigenous community that inhabits the area) to preserve the land and plant trees other than coffee, to foster the area’s biodiversity. The Meanit community makes up a large part of Gesha Village’s workforce, and the estate’s charity, the Gesha Village Foundation, promotes education for the community by supporting local schools and by assisting the community in its economic sustenance.
“In this year’s auction, we’ve pushed the quality envelope and we specifically highlighted the hard work of the people behind the scenes; from the cherry pickers to the security guards, to the managers and everyone in between. Our people are an integral part of consistently maintaining high-quality standards; their unique personalities and intentions facilitate the success and evolution of our farm”, says Rachel Samuel, co-founder of Gesha Village Estate.
Co-founder Adam Overton, who is also responsible for the management of the farm, comments: “I am very proud of this year’s auction results. We started our auction six years ago. The annual event helps us to strengthen the legacy of Gesha Village Estate and it enables us to expand our ongoing support of the local community. It is encouraging to see how many more auctions are being held nowadays in Ethiopia and throughout the African continent”.
“What is even more powerful is the amount of high-end specialty coffees that are coming out of Ethiopia and how many producers are doing experimental processing and really pushing the boundaries. It’s wonderful to be a pioneer in this niche industry and witness the ripple effects of what a clear vision and commitment can achieve,” says co-founder Willem Boot, who also operates Boot Coffee Campus, a certified training facility near San Francisco, CA.