The world coffee production depends on two species, Coffea arabica L. and Coffea canephora. Arabica or highland coffee (C. arabica L.) accounts for 2/3 of world coffee production and the left over portion comes from C. canephora (Labouisse et al., 2008). Arabica coffee is the coffee species grown in Ethiopia and the country is the primary center of origin and genetic diversity for this crop (Vega, 2008). Ethiopia is the first producer and exporter in Africa and 5th in the world (ICO, 2013).
Coffee farming systems in Ethiopia categorized into four. They are forest coffee, semi - forest coffee, garden coffee, and plantation coffee. According to Taye Kufa (2013) from total production of coffee; forest coffee, semi-forest coffee, garden coffee and plantation coffee constituted 10%, 35%, 55%, and 8% of the total production respectively.
Coffee is one of the most important agricultural export commodities in the world economy, next to oils and it is the most important and strategic commodity on which Ethiopia's economy depends on. From the time age-old, the coffee sector is one of the backbones of the economic and social development in Ethiopia (Tadesse Woldemariam and Feyera Senbeta, 2008).
Because of economic importance, coffee production and its processing were increased. The processes were involving either dry or wet processing method for the removal of coffee husk and pulp (Pandey et al., 2000). This process represents serious environmental problem contains high content of tannins, phenolic compounds and chlorogenic acids that could inhibit plant root growth and lead in greenhouse gas emissions through anaerobic decomposition that necessitates the proper use and disposal of coffee waste (Fan et al., 2003; Murthy and Naidu, 2012).
Regardless of its contribution to the national as well as the regional economy, the coffee sector is the most unsustainable sector due to environmental solid waste management is not concerned. The current practices of green coffee bean production are not promoting the health of the community as well as well-being of the land on which coffee cherries are being produced. The residue from dry coffee processing is burnt while those from wet processing are dumped into environment, both being disposed into landfills and surface water and cause environmental problem (Alemayehu Haddis and Rani, 2008) thus safe and environmentally harmonious management of solid wastes becomes a major issue for these nations. Thus, there is a need to find alternative uses for these residues.
Also in Ethiopia, most people of dependend on ensete (ensete ventricosum) and used for food in the form of kocho and amicho (e.g., the Sidama people) (Ferew Kebede, 2012). However, its leaf was disposed into the local environment during this process. Thus, sustainable solutions must be sought for its better management.
Because of the economic significance coffee and enset farming is increased in Dale district through a time. During the processing for use, these farm release huge amount of waste. These wastes were possessed significant environmental effects, because of poor management of solid waste in the Dale district. However, these wastes are rich in organic matters, for the production of value added products like, compost. Compost is the solution and alternative use of the coffee pulp Henok Kassa and Tenaw Workayew, 2014; Fekadu Shemekite et al., 2014). Composting of coffee by-product with agricultural waste such as cow dung, chat, flower leaf, Millettia ferruginea and also with sawdust and effective microorganism was carried out at different proportion (Franca et al., 2009; Henok Kassa and Tenaw Workayew, 2014; Fekadu Shemekite et al., 2014; Gezahegn Degefe et al., 2016). However, no research was carried out to investigate the proportion of composting of coffee pulp with enset leaf (Ensete ventricosum) and cow dung at different proportions.
A study was, therefore, made to understand the changes during composting of coffee pulp amended alone or together with cow dung and enset leaf at different proportions. High qualities of compost were produced by monitoring factor affecting composting process. In order to identify quality of compost produced, physicochemical properties of the compost were determined during composting period up to maturity stages and compare to compost quality standard set up by different countries like Dutch, Belgium and Italy (Brinton, 2000) including Ethiopia (EEPA, 2004).
Thus, this study was intended to evaluate some physicochemical parameters of compost produced from coffee pulp with and without locally available organic matter (cow dung and enset) at Dale district.