Ethiopia is the motherland of Coffee Arabica. It is endowed with a rich variety of coffee and its diverse origins. Ethiopian coffee is rich with original flavour and aroma because of the geographical (altitude, soil, temperature, rainfall, topography, ecology), genotypic and cultural variety within the country. Coffee has been growing in Ethiopia for thousands of years, in the forests of southwestern highlands. The word coffee drives from Kaffa, name of a place in the South Western Ethiopian highlands where coffee was first discovered. It is also known to be the first Coffee Arabica exporter in Africa and is currently the fifth largest coffee producer in the world.
About 1,000 years ago, coffee was a goatherd in Ethiopia southwestern highlands. It was discovered in Kaffa area where it first blossom gave its name to coffee. It believed that coffee cultivation and drinking began as early as the 9th century in Ethiopia. It cultivated Yemen earlier, around AD 575. While, it originated in Ethiopia, from where it traveled to the Yemen about 600 years ago, and from Arabia began its journey around the world. Among the many legends, Kaldi, an Abyssinian goatherd, who lived around AD 850 found the origin of coffee.
The most famous story was that of the goat herd, Kaldi (who lived around 9th century) who observed his normally docile goats had suddenly behaved exceptionally lively, skipping, rearing and bleating loudly after eating the bright red berries from a shiny dark-leaved shrub nearby and that Kaldi tried a few berries himself and soon felt extraordinary, stimulated or a novel sense of elation. Ethiopian cultural ceremonies and rituals were using the beans in early periods of domestication as a stimulant and a special solid food, for instance, the ripe berries were squashed, combined with animal fats and shaped in to balls, which can be carried and eaten during the long journey since the time immemorial by Oromo people.