Ethiopian Gesha Auction Sets Record Price Levels
Modern technology coffee estate revives legendary high-quality Ethiopian coffee variety
Ethiopia, May 31, 2017—The 400-hectare Gesha Village Coffee Estate was established in 2012 in the highlands of western Ethiopia with seeds from a nearby coffee forest. The farm grows a legendary coffee variety called Gesha. Today the estate sold its highest-priced lot at $85 per pound, the highest price ever paid for African coffee.
The auction included 21 super-specialty coffee lots produced by Gesha Village Coffee Estate in a remote region called Gesha, western Ethiopia. More than 130 bidders, including coffee buyers from Asia, Australia, Europe, Saudi Arabia, and the USA, participated in the electronic auction, which had total revenues of US$216,607—a world record for any coffee estate in the world.
Consultant Willem Boot, who was also the auction manager and marketer, explains: “We created an unparalleled promotional campaign in countries like Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, and Australia. As a result, we had close to 150 high-profile bidders for this auction.”
The top lot, a washed process Gesha 1931, was sold at $85.10 per pound to Pebble Coffee, a coffee merchant from Taiwan. In total, 5,423 pounds of unroasted coffee beans were sold at an average price of $40 per pound, 30 times higher than the average commodity price for Arabica coffee.
Gesha Village was started by Ethiopian-born Rachel Samuel and American Adam Overton, with the participation of award-winning coffee guru Willem Boot. About the farm’s unique focus on social values and quality, Rachel says: “We revived the Ethiopian strains of the super-quality Gesha variety and we built a 400+ hectare coffee farm that has been transforming the local economy of the Gesha area.”