The lifestyle magazine Thrillist polled a number of experts in the coffee industry recently in a bid to determine what the best coffee growing country in the world is.
In total, eleven coffee connoisseurs were quizzed about their preferences in the industry and, importantly, which nation nurtured the best beans.
“Being a coffee superpower requires years of economic, infrastructural, and government investment,” wrote Dan Gentile in the prelude to his original piece, but which country came out on top?
Well, that would be Ethiopia.
It was a resounding victory too: Ethiopia collected 25 points, more than double the Kenyan total.
As the largest producer of coffee in Africa, Ethiopia is one of the biggest growers of coffee in the world: According to current statistics the country is the fifth biggest producer on the global stage, coming behind the might of Brazil as well as Colombia and the two Asian powerhouses of Vietnam and Indonesia.
Discussing the results, Sarah Allen, the editor of Barista Magazine, noted that “there’s a reason great coffee comes out of Ethiopia year after year: it’s truly the birthplace of coffee.
“That means its producers rarely contend with problems that can overwhelm coffee growers in Central and South America….Because coffee is native [it] rarely incites climate of disease-born chaos.”
Lorenzo Perkins, of Cuvee Coffee, echoed Allen’s sentiments and extolled the qualities of Ethiopian grown varieties. The director of education said that “it’s hard to imagine a coffee that tastes better than a finely washed Yirgacheffe, or a big, sweet, natural processed Sidama.”
With such high praise and a high quality of coffee, it is no surprise therefore to state that the crop is very important to the Ethiopian economy. About a quarter of all the country’s export revenue is generated by the industry and an estimated 15 million people, either directly or indirectly, are reliant upon the sector for their livelihoods.
But we’ll finish with another quote from Perkins, one that we wholeheartedly agree with: “Every time I drink a coffee from Ethiopia, I can’t help but feel that this is how coffee is supposed to taste and everything else is an imitation, a copy of a copy.”
The full Thrillist list is:
- Costa Rica
- United States of America (Hawaii)
Source: The World Coffee Press