Sidama, Ethiopia

A holistic project that supports small-holder coffee farmers.

Featured Image & Text

About Ethiopia

Ethiopia is the birthplace of the Arabica coffee plant and the largest producer of coffee in Africa. The Sidama Region of Ethiopia is a source of some of the best quality coffee in the world. However, it is also one of the most deforested areas of Ethiopia due to unsustainable agricultural practices, illegal timber logging, and firewood consumption.


In 2015, the Sidama project was established to support small-scale coffee farmers in their fight against land erosion and extreme climatic events such as droughts, heavy rains, and higher temperatures.

This project implements agroforestry practices in coffee systems while rejuvenating older coffee parcels. It seeks to address worsening farming conditions, such as regular pests and diseases affecting coffee fields and yields, loss of biodiversity, reduced pollination, reduced natural pest control and low quality and quantity of water resources. Technical training through Good Agricultural Practices reinforces farmers’ knowledge and promotes revenue diversification.

Empowering Farmers

Established in 2021 with five community nurseries that supply tree seedlings of indigenous and naturalized species, the Sidama project has broadened to work with seven cooperatives in 2024.

Nursery managers working in these nurseries receive extensive training in seed collection, preparation, and sowing, which contributes to the long-term planting capacity of our farmers.

PUR’s goal is to provide affordable seedlings to farmers while transferring knowledge and promoting sustainable farming practices.

Restoring Ecosystem Services

Diversified native trees are planted in agroforestry and reforestation models within coffee parcels. Project activities include agroforestry training, tree distribution and planting, monitoring and technical support.

Implementing agroforestry practices has the potential to reduce erosion in parcels exposed to landslides, protecting uphill areas that generate natural springs, which can improve water quantity and quality, restore ecosystem services and increase farmers’ resilience.

Community Engagement Activities

Improved cookstoves are implemented to reduce firewood consumption, time spent cooking and collecting firewood, and indoor air quality.

Beekeeping, awareness-raising workshops, and community engagement activities are implemented to support the community and improve livelihoods. Gender diagnostic studies are launched to understand gender norms in the area and how to include women and support gender equality.

PUR x Nespresso Partnership

Since 2016, the multi-funded Sidama agroforestry project has grown to include ten partners across the Sidama region in 2023—six of which are supported by PUR x Nespresso’s Agroforestry Program.

"Many years ago, there was a rich variety of livelihoods in our community. However, due to deforestation, wild animals and medicinal trees, bushes and shrubs disappeared, and some of them were decreasing at an alarming rate. Wild deer and gazelles are among the endangered wild animals, but currently, we are seeing these wild animals return, thanks to the reforestation program."

Demoze, Tree Nursery Site Manager/Owner