Set up in 2001 by Haile Gebre, 640 hectare Shakisso farm sits in the Guji region of Ethiopia, and is a semi forested estate. Shakisso was the first coffee farm in the highlands of Guji, which had always been cattle farming land - Haile was the pioneer that changed the face of the land.
After fleeing Yirgacheffe at the age of 10, because feudal lords claimed the land they lived on, Haile joined the navy but found it unfulfilling, so returned to university and eventually became active in politics and joined the Ministry of Land Reform. He was very passionate about social reform and his activism landed him a 3 year prison sentence. Once released, he studied business management in Moscow, and on his return to Ethiopia, joined the Oromia Co-Operative as regional governor. In 2001, together with his wife and 7 daughters, Haile made his home in Guji and inherited land suitable for growing coffee - he planted coffee seedlings and encouraged other local farmers to do the same.
In the next 15 years, thanks to Haile's efforts, Guji became fully converted from cattle farming to coffee growing lands with 45 washing stations and 55 dry mills established.
Producer: Haile Gebre