Sidamo (or Sidama – the latter refers to the Sidama people, while the former is what used to be known as Sidamo province) covers a large area spreading through the fertile highlands south of Lake Awasa in the Rift Valley. It is made up of over 20 different administrative areas, or ‘woredas’, with varying microclimates and altitudes; accordingly, there is a big variety of both grades and cup profiles that end up labelled as Sidamo.
The Sidamo region (along with Harrar and Yirgacheffe) is one of three trademarked coffee regions in Ethiopia and is well known for having perfect climate conditions for coffee thanks to altitudes of between a 1,500 to 2,200 metres above sea level, ample rainfall, optimum temperature and fertile soil.
Around 60% of the region’s coffees are washed, though Sidamo also produces some excellent sun-dried coffees. There are upwards of 50 cooperatives in operation here, as well as many private buying stations – with over 200 washing stations around the various woredas.