Spotlight: Limited Reserve METAD Gedeb
Author | groundwork coffee Date | September 27, 2020
Our newest Limited Reserve coffee, METAD Gedeb, comes to us by way of The Adinew Brothers. Michael, Aman, and Tariku are owners and operators of METAD, a third-generation family-owned business with two farm operations in Ethiopia, one in Hambela and one in Gedeb.
How the Adinew family ended up in the coffee business is an origin story in its own right. Prior to World War 2, their grandmother Muluemebet Emiru worked as the first woman pilot in Africa (and inadvertently became the first woman to hold a driver’s license when it became a requirement for pilots operating within the newly formed Ethiopian Airlines.) When the Italians attempted to occupy Ethiopia for a second time in the 1930s, their grandmother was forced into hiding for almost five years. The Ethiopians succeeded in avoiding occupation and colonization by the Italians and as a reward for her service to the country, their grandmother was awarded three pieces of land by the king, each home to wild coffee trees. Together with her husband, who she met while in hiding, Muluemebet transformed the farmland into a private coffee estate.
Nearly 80 years later the Adinew brothers continue to honor their family legacy by producing exceptional coffee and leading innovation within Ethiopia and Africa at large.
In addition to its storied history, METAD is a model of socially responsible coffee production. 70% of site workers are women and a portion of all profits are reinvested into the community. Through the “Out-Growers” program, METAD works to improve production quality and elevate the standard of living for farmers at the same time. The famers in the program receive training, starter crops best suited to their individual areas, and on-going support in money management so that they can stay economically strong through the off-season. The Out-Grower program started with 400 participants about five years ago and now includes over 6,800 farmers and, including their families and households, supports over 75,000 people.
When the brothers sought to reclaim their grandmother’s land in 2013, Aman was passionate about giving back to Ethiopia in the process, specifically through supporting an orphanage. Today they are able to support over 900 children to ensure they receive a world-class education. Teachers who agree to work at the community schools have their salaries matched as long as they meet key performance indicators. If all the teachers in the school perform up to par, the principal will also receive a salary match. This program ensures that high-quality educators are able to stay in the area. METAD supports the students by providing all necessary school supplies and have been able to provide college scholarships to 200-250 students each year.
We had the opportunity to speak to Michael Adinew and it’s clear that their operation is strongly rooted in pride and in love. Their programs ensure that each worker feels valued. At their production facilities, all workers receive meals throughout the day and are provided uniforms which are cleaned each night. These practices help to eliminate the “haves” from the “have nots.” Where everyone is equal, everyone can thrive. Michael notes that everything they do is “based in love.” Giving love to the coffee plants ensures a great product. And loving the farmers gives them a better quality of life.
The phrase “a rising tide lifts all boats" could not be more true than it is with METAD. Michael, Aman, and Tariku continue to set a new standard for Ethiopian coffee and production that others will strive to meet, overtime improving the whole industry. Our partnership with METAD one of Groundwork's oldest and we couldn't be more proud to present this year’s Ethiopia Metad Yirgacheffe Gedeb.
Limited Reserve METAD Gedeb is available for a limited time in our online store.