The Beloya washing station lies in the Kochere District; just north of Chelelektu, and 45km from Dilla, the administrative centre of the Gedeo Zone. The washing station itself has two processing units to ensure a timely washing and drying of the cherry, using water from the local river system.
Smallholder farmers in the hills surrounding the washing station will bring their cherry here to be processed, cupped, and sold; the station itself has been around for over twenty years, but has recently been bought and expansion and improvement works are underway. The 12 fermentation tanks and more than 136 raised beds allow for lot management to ensure traceability. This drive for quality is not limited to the washing station as the Dry mill too has laser colour sorters for detecting defects.
The coffee from here is grown at high altitudes in iron rich soils with a spread of genetic diversity provided by the heirloom varietals. The coffee farmers use traditional pest control methods that have been in use for many years, and so organic production is commonly found.
Red cherry is picked and freshly sorted before pulping. Over-ripe and under-ripe beans are handpicked and separated before processing. Fresh red cherries are supplied to the washing stations. Coffees are pulped and allowed to ferment for 36-48 hours.
The fermented coffee is washed with clean running water, soaked in clean water and then dried for 18 days to retain about 11.5% of moisture.
Dried parchment coffee is stored in field warehouse until it is transported for further processing to Addis Ababa. The parchment coffee is processed in a dry processing warehouse to remove the husks and the clean beans are packaged in labelled bags for export to ensure traceability.