[WLRC June 2024]: Water and Land Resource Center (WLRC) staff members, in collaboration with the consortium members of the CARE for Value and Sustainability Research Project team, visited different woredas of Kaffa Zone in Southwest Ethiopia Region, 12 – 14 June 2024. The purpose of the field visit was to explore forest coffee, semi-forest coffee, forest coffee unions, participatory forest management (PFM) cooperatives, and coffee processing in coffee-producing areas to ensure the successful implementation of the project in the area.

The fieldwork took place in forest and semi-forest coffee production areas in Decha Woreda, Gedam Kebele, Kahin PFM Cooperatives, and Gimbo Woreda Kamba Forest. In addition to studying the natural environment, the research team examined the operations of coffee unions by visiting dry coffee hulling facilities, as well as storage and coffee cupping facilities at cooperatives and unions.

During the field visit, the research team identified potential research PFM cooperatives and unions. They also gathered geo-spatial information to comply with the European Union Deforestation Regulation. The research team, consisting of members from WLRC, the Center for Development and Environment at the University of Bern, Ethiopian Forestry Development, and the Ethiopian Coffee and Tea Authority, had an enriching three-day visit of the Kafa Forest Coffee and Biosphere Reserve, as well as the stunning natural setting of Bonga University.

The CARE for Value and Sustainability Project is a three-year initiative (2024 – 2027) funded by the Swiss Development and Cooperation through its Solution-Oriented Research for Development (SOR4D) Programme. The project aims to promote deforestation-free coffee development and traceability systems that prioritize the ecological, sociocultural, and economic well-being of producing environments.