Main research question/goal
Ethiopia is an important country for coffee production, especially Arabica coffee. This project focuses on the effects of intensification of forest management of the Ethiopian coffee forests. What are the effects of coffee forest management intensification on the ecosystem services provided by Ethiopian montane forests on the genetic integrity and diversity of Arabica coffee populations and on Arabica coffee quality?Research approach
Study sites are selected along a gradient of intensification. The composition of the plant and insect communities are compared between forests and related to soil characteristics and the biochemical composition of coffee berries. Moreover, the genetic admixture of cultivated coffee in the wild gene pool of Arabica coffee is investigated using Next Generation Sequencing methods. The research is performed in close collaboration with Ethiopian researchers.Relevance/Valorisation
The pressure on the Ethiopian coffee forests is rapidly increasing through the intensification of forest management. This project aims to study the consequences of this intensification on the plant and pollinator diversity in coffee forests and to determine the influence on Arabica coffee production. The integrity of the wild Arabica coffee gene pool is also studied. The outcome of this project will contribute to the design of conservation measurements for the Ethiopean coffee forests and for the wild gene pool of Arabica coffee.