Every Friday, Perfect Daily Grind rounds up the top coffee industry news from the previous week.
Here are this week’s coffee news stories.
Mon, 2 Oct
- Glitter Cat Barista closes after five years of providing competition sponsorship and support. Founded in 2018 by seasoned US Barista Championship competitor Veronica Pearl, the non-profit has provided free competition coaching to coffee professionals who are part of marginalised communities. More than 140 individuals received training from Glitter Cat, with 51 people progressing to national championships.
- Snoop Dogg pulls investment from INDOxys coffee brand. The US musician previously partnered with Indonesian businessman Michael Riady on the RTD coffee brand, but reports suggest he backed out amid concerns about Riady’s management.
- SCA calls for proposals for 2024 Specialty Coffee Expo workshop series. Proposals can be submitted until 27 October 2023, and successful applications will be contacted on 30 October 2023. Previous workshop topics include “Steaming Plant-based Milks”, “The Science Behind the Flavor Wheel”, and “Becoming a Certified B Corporation”.
- Louis Dreyfus Company opens instant coffee production facility in Vietnam. In partnership with Instanta, LDC opened the plant to meet rising demand. The new facility can produce up to 5,600 tonnes of freeze-dried instant coffee per year.
- The 2023-24 Indian Coffee Championship winners crowned at World Coffee Conference in Bangalore. Mohammad Afsar is the 2023 Indian Latte Art Champion, and will represent India at the 2023 World Coffee Championships in Taiwan from 17 to 20 November. Hrishikesh Mohite of Café De Meet is the 2024 Indian Barista Champion, and will compete at next year’s World Barista Championship in Busan, South Korea from 1 to 4 May.
- Submissions open for 2024-27 World Coffee Roasting Championship production roaster sponsorship. Applications are open to production roasters which have a 3 to 6kg capacity that are or will be in production by the end of the 2023 calendar year. Submissions are open until 10 November 2023.
- Saudi Arabia aims to plant 1.2 million coffee trees by 2026. The country currently has more than 400,000 arabica trees planted in several provinces, and now plans to drive economic growth through rapid expansion of its coffee sector.
- Yemen celebrates World Coffee Day with largest tasting in the Middle East. The Yemeni National Coffee Auction hosted the tasting session as part of Yemeni Coffee Week, and showcased more than 100 different varieties alongside live demonstrations and talks.
Tue, 3 Oct
- Cerrado Coffee Growers Cooperative exports record volume of green coffee. Expocacer reported shipping almost 29,000 tonnes of green coffee this season. The co-operative aims to ship more than 480,000 bags by the end of the harvest.
- Four Gesha lots receive over 90 points at 2023 Cup of Excellence Colombia. The top lot, which received 90.61 points, was produced by Duberney Cifuentes Fajardo at the Montreal farm in Tolima. The auction will take place on 21 November.
- Qima Coffee signs memorandum of understanding with Yemen Ministry of Agriculture. The company says the MoU is a significant step towards developing the country’s coffee sector. The agreement includes commitments to research collaboration, producer training, and infrastructure development.
- Junzhi Liu wins 2024 Spanish Barista Championship at this year’s Barcelona Coffee Awards. The founder of Brew Coffee Barcelona will represent Spain at the 2024 World Barista Championship in May next year. Nomad was also named Spain’s best roaster at this year’s Barcelona Coffee Awards.
- World Coffee Innovation Award winners & 2024 UK Brewers Cup Champion announced at Caffè Culture in London. Notable winners include Superkop (Traditional Machine Innovation), Hard Beans (Automatic Machine Innovation), Big Island Coffee Roasters (Speciality Coffee Roaster), Raw Material (Ethical Initiative), and Rokit Health (Ready-to-drink Product). Luca Croce of Gold Box Roastery placed first at the 2024 UK Brewers Cup.
- Blue Marble and Nestlé partner to provide weather insurance to Indonesian coffee farmers. The climate insurer says the pilot programme will provide more than 800 farmers with better financial protection against unpredictable weather. The project forms part of Nestlé’s Nescafé Plan 2030 sustainability goals.
Wed, 4 Oct
- illycaffè launches its first 100% certified regenerative agriculture blend. The company sources its Arabica Selection Brazil Cerrado Mineiro blend exclusively from regenagri® crops, which it says helps to improve soil fertility and biodiversity without releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
- The 2023-24 Singapore Coffee Championships held at this year’s Specialty Coffee & Tea Asia expo. Alistair Seetho won the 2024 Brewers Cup, Terence Tan placed first at the 2024 Cup Tasters Championship, Jervis Tan won the 2023 Latte Art Championship, and Courtney Kheng is the 2024 Singaporean Barista Champion. The Specialty Coffee & Tea Asia event formed part of the 2023 Speciality Food & Drinks Asia expo, which attracted over 7,000 attendees from 49 countries. Next year’s event will return from 1 to 3 October at the Sands Expo & Convention Centre in Singapore.
- Kaffe Bueno opens the world’s first coffee biorefinery in Copenhagen, Denmark. The facility features an R&D and production centre designed to meet increasing demand for natural ingredients and to “unlock” the health benefits of coffee.
- Early bird tickets go on sale for first-ever Nordic Coffee Fest. Touted as the world’s most sustainable coffee festival, the two-day event will take place at Eriksbergshallen in Gothenburg, Sweden on 24 & 25 February 2024 – and will host the inaugural Nordics Best Roaster competition.
- US judge rules Starbucks violated federal labour laws with exclusive pay increases to non-unionised workers. The judge asserted that unionised workers were left out of the company’s employee compensation plan – implemented in August 2022 – which was a direct violation of several labour laws.
- Go Fund Bean appoints new executive director following financial investigation. Director of Marketing Valorie Clark is now the interim executive director, replacing co-founder Adam JacksonBey. A recent internal investigation revealed a board member misappropriated the group’s disaster relief fund for personal and travel expenses.
- The Barista League celebrates successful return to Melbourne, Australia. The competition, hosted at Proud Mary Coffee on 22 September, attracted hundreds of attendees and several special guests, including 2022 World Barista Champion Anthony Douglas. The winners were Melanie and Aum of Team Udom.
Thu, 5 Oct
- Arabica futures fall to lowest price levels since January. The ICE arabica contract for December delivery fell by 0.3% to US $1.46/lb on Thursday, despite a weaker Brazilian currency. Meanwhile, the December ICE robusta contract rose by 0.3% after falling to a 5½-month low on Wednesday.
- Kaffelogic partners with Showroom Coffee as exclusive distributor in the US and Mexico. The Brooklyn business, which also distributes Arc roasters, will supply Kaffelogic coffee roasters in both countries.
- Melitta Canada achieves several new coffee sustainability certifications. The company’s coffee is now Rainforest Alliance, FSC, and BPI-certified, while several of its cone filters have also received FSC and BPI recognition.
- More than 500 people expected to attend this year’s Sintercafé event. Sintercafé International Coffee Week is an annual event which takes place in Costa Rica to promote the country’s coffee sector. This year, Sintercafé will be held from 8 to 10 November at Hotel Real Intercontinental in San José.
- UK Coffee Week 2023 to take place from 16 to 22 October. Coffee shops across the UK will raise funds for Project Waterfall, an organisation dedicated to providing clean drinking water for coffee-producing communities.
- Rancilio to host invite-only HostMilano after party in Milan, Italy on 14 October. The party, co-hosted with The Barista League, will include the Barista Roulette competition, where eight baristas will go head-to-head in a series of coffee-themed challenges.
- Atomo launches beanless “coffee” in the US. The company uses “superfoods” and upcycled ingredients to produce what it calls “the most sustainable coffee on the planet”. Its first release is an espresso-style blend, which is also available in a decaf option.
- Report says thousands of coffee-producing families are trapped in bonded labour in Karnataka, India. According to The Guardian, Adivasi Hakkugala Samanvaya Samiti (AHSS) – the coordinating committee on local tribal rights – has already helped 1,500 bonded labourers leave coffee farms in the Kodagu district. Despite being abolished in the 1970s, the committee says bonded labour is still widespread in India, creating a “vicious den of debt bondage”.
- East African producing countries set new record for EU coffee exports. Exports to the EU have more than doubled over the past four years, reaching US $118 million last year – up from US $89.3 million in 2018. Experts cite the EU-supported Market Access Upgrade Programme as a significant contributor.
- Blue Bottle launches limited-edition Nespresso capsules. The exclusive Blend No. 1 capsules include natural processed coffee sourced from Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia and Rwenzori, Uganda. Blue Bottle and Nespresso are set to release future collaborations in the coming months. Select Nespresso boutiques will also host tasting sessions for customers to try the new capsules.
Fri, 6 Oct
- This year’s US, Brazilian & Mexican AeroPress Championships confirmed for October and November. The Brazilian competition will be hosted by Mixology at Guanabara Station in São Paulo on 28 & 29 October. The Mexican event will be hosted by Quentin Café at Casa Versalles in Mexico City on 4 November, while Onyx Coffee will host the US contest on 2 & 3 November.
- New York Coffee Festival takes place in Manhattan. The annual festival, which will run until 8 October, includes the Roasters Village, Latte Art Live, and the Coffee Masters NYC competition.
- Western regional Australian AeroPress Championship to take place 28 October in Osborne Park. The event will be hosted by Micrology Coffee Roasters at its roastery. The winner will earn one of seven spots at the 2023 Australian AeroPress Championship, which will be held one day before the world final in Melbourne, Australia.
- Café Business Expo 2023 to take place on 10 & 11 October in London, England. The event, which will be held at ExCel, will feature more than 100 speakers, a product innovation exhibition, and an industry awards ceremony.
- First-ever Barista League Milwaukee event scheduled for 21 October. The multi-disciplinary coffee competition will take place at The Back Room @ Colectivo. Guest judges include Arielle Rebekah of Trans & Caffeinated Consulting and Veronica Pearl of Glitter Cat Barista.
- The 2024 National Coffee Association Convention to take place in Nashville, Tennessee from 7 to 9 March. Registration is now open for the annual event, which will feature insights from expert coffee professionals from around the world, as well as numerous exhibitions.
- Oatly to host exclusive JNP Coffee cupping event in Berlin, Germany. JNP Coffee founder Jeanine Niyonzima-Aroian will lead the cupping session at Mehringdamm 53-55 on 10 October at 17:30 local time. Attendees will be able to taste a wide range of Burundi coffees, and registration in advance is required.
- Registration opens for 2023 International Coffee Week. The annual event will take place at Expominas in Belo Horizonte, Brazil from 8 to 10 November. This year’s SIC will feature extensive exhibitions, lectures, workshops, competitions, and coffee tastings.
- Cimbali Group acquires major Swiss distributor. The coffee equipment manufacturer has fully acquired Vassalli Service AG, which Cimbali has worked with for more than 60 years. As part of a seamless transition and continuation of operations, current CEO Marc Schneider will retain his role and also become a Board of Directors member alongside Enrico Bracesco, who is the current General Manager of Cimbali Group. Bracesco will now also assume the role of Chairman of the Board of Directors of Vassalli Service AG.
Here are a few coffee news stories from previous weeks that you might find interesting. Take a look.
- Wed, 20 Sep – EU to ban sweeping environmental claims by 2026 as it cracks down on greenwashing. According to Financial Times, new rules agreed in September will ban sweeping environmental claims like “climate neutral” and “eco”, as well as any statements related to carbon offsetting unless independently validated. The rules will also ban “green” labels from non-approved sustainability schemes.
- Wed, 27 Sep – Kenyan chain Java House to pursue IPO as parent company seeks to divest. Parent company Actis plans to offload the brand in coming months, while the Java House CEO believes the public market remains a real opportunity. The chain currently operates 68 stores in Kenya, three in Uganda, and two in Rwanda.
- Thu, 28 Sep – ofi says it has improved the lives of more than 100,000 coffee farmers since 2020. The food ingredient manufacturer says it has achieved more than half of its target to improve the livelihoods of 200,000 coffee farmers by 2025, as per its latest Coffee LENS report.
- Fri, 29 Sep – Eversys welcomes 2023 World Barista Champion Boram Um as global brand ambassador. Um joins Dale Harris and Simon Sun as a brand ambassador for the Swiss super-automatic coffee machine manufacturer.
- Fri, 29 Sep – International Coffee Organisation and Global Coffee Platform renew commitment to coffee sustainability collaboration. The two organisations signed a memorandum of understanding at the World Coffee Conference in Bangalore, India – pledging to renew and expand their partnership within the Coffee Public Private Task Force (CPPTF).
- Fri, 29 Sep – Origin Coffee Roasters opens its first café outside of London and Cornwall. The new Bristol location is the roaster’s sixth overall.
- Sat, 30 Sep – Study finds coffee may reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease by up to eight times. Singapore’s National Neuroscience Institute reports that two cups of traditional kopi a day can reduce the risk of the disease between four to eight times in people who have Asian gene variants linked to the condition.
- Sat, 30 Sep – National Bank of Ethiopia launches probe into claims coffee exporters misused loans. The country’s Coffee and Tea Authority says 144 exporters were given special access to loans to mitigate financial constraints. However, it alleges that just 37 made proper use of the funds, while 58 didn’t export any coffee at all.
- Sun, 1 Oct – Data reveals just 2.3% of South Africans drink whole bean and ground coffee. The Marketing Research Foundation says more than half of all South African coffee consumers drink instant coffee, despite the growing number of coffee shops in major towns and cities.
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