The Boschessi washing station is in the West of the Guiji Zone which was formed in 2002 when the woredas of the Borena Zone were split apart to create it. This now allows for better recognition of the unique profi le from the Guiji zone, quite distinct from Sidamo (of which it was previously considered a sub-region) Guiji is named after the tribe of the Oromo people who are one of the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia and represent 34.5% of Ethiopia’s population. Among both the Guji and Borena Oromo communities coffee has become a special offering for guests.
Their tradition is to prepare the coffee with butter, it is called Buna Qalaa which literally translates to ‘coffee slaughter’ so named after the wider tradition of slaughtering an animal to welcome respected guests. The coffee is picked at optimum ripeness and dried on raised beds for 15 – 17 days. This style of drying allows an airflow both above and below the coffee making the drying process easier and more efficient than patio drying.
The Heirloom coffee variety is a catch all term which encompasses many varieties of coffee in Ethiopia. Varieties come from broadly two categories; Jimma Agricultural Research Centre (JARC), an Ethiopian research centre concentrating on breeding coffees more resistant to pests (about 40 varieties), and regional landraces which grow wild in Ethiopia (not all are yet documented
but thought to be over 10,000) Regional landraces of Guji zone include (all named after indigenous trees) Bedessa, Kudhumi, Miqe, Sawa and Walichu.
The small farms where the coffee is grown are farming on red clay soil which is rich in minerals such as aluminium and iron.