Paramount Coffee Project in Surry Hills is known for bringing international coffee professionals to Sydney for its residency programs, which educate about the industry overseas. Now, Paramount is teaming up with not-for-profit TechnoServe to connect with the coffee production industry in Ethiopia, culminating in a range of events in The Rocks this week.
TechnoServe provides research, consulting and support to budding entrepreneurs in places where business opportunities and resources are minimal. From assisting Ghanaian cashew farmers by providing them with equipment and technical assistance, to providing agricultural and economic research and advice to rice producers in India and Bangladesh, TechnoServe’s helping hands cover the globe. Funding comes from donations from large businesses and entities, for example the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Paramount’s coffee manager, Dylan Johnson, describes the importance of coffee to the African nation. “It’s been visible in traditional Ethiopian culture since ancient times,” he says. “One of the ways TechnoServe assists Ethiopian coffee producers is by providing access to clean water and better equipment, to ensure better quality products, and by connecting farmers with buyers.” Nowadays, coffee makes up 30 per cent of Ethiopian exports and provides an income for millions of households.
Paramount will be holding two seminars coinciding with Aroma coffee festival introducing two Ethiopian entrepreneurs, Moata Abachebsa and Ansha Suleiman who have been flown over especially for the event.
The sessions will be an immersion in the origins and production of African coffee, particularly for those interested in coffee origins. “There’ll be a traditional Ethiopian-style coffee ceremony, with coffee roasted and brewed in-house and then shared around,” says Johnson.