Casa De Cha Specialty tea

Specialty tea: The elephant in the coffee house

Bradley Cahill and Mafalda Moutinho of Casa De Cha invite the Australian coffee industry to work together with tea professionals to change the service and standards of specialty tea across the country. 

Imagine an industry where tea aficionados were given the same level of quality and care as coffee drinkers. For us at Casa De Cha – new kids on the block and true tea ambassadors – the inconsistencies in how tea is offered and brewed is the elephant in the coffee house, and we’re committed to changing that.  Read more

Australia International Coffee Awards winners reveal secrets to success

BeanScene talks with the winners of this year’s Australian International Coffee Awards to find out their secrets to success.

Over three days in March, a panel of coffee experts congregated in a mass blind tasting to award the smoothest, most flavoursome, and most refined local and international coffees in the industry’s revered annual roasting competition.

New South Wales roaster Danes Specialty Coffee took home the coveted Champion Australian Roaster for the second year in a row at this year’s Australian International Coffee Awards (AICA).

Read more

Biopak gives back

BioPak’s vision is a world without waste. Through its compost service, BioPak hopes to offer a circular economy solution that treats foodservice packaging and food scraps as resources, not waste.

BioPak is working with cafés and restaurants to spread awareness of its simple composting solution and encourage a behavioural change around packaging and waste.

In December 2017, the foodservice packaging company began studying waste, where it was going, and what it was doing to the environment. From its surprising research, BioPak found the foodservice and hospitality sector sends more than 900,000 tonnes of organic waste to landfill.

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single-use plastics ban

No time to waste: Could a coffee cup ban work?

Two years on from the War on Waste movement, BeanScene looks at what has actually changed in the Australian coffee industry and the efficacy of a single-use plastics ban.

Thousands of Australians order coffee to go from their favourite cafés every day, leaving with their precious beverage safely contained in a roughly eight-ounce paper cup. For many of them, once the coffee is gone, the cup is no longer of any use and disposed of without a second thought. That’s the problem. Read more

What roasters can do to combat coffee prices

Flavour fights futures: How Zest Specialty Coffee combats coffee prices

Zest Specialty Coffee’s Darren Stinson on what roasters can do to soften the impact of the low C-market and support the ongoing investment of quality coffee production.

It’s important to constantly re-evaluate your vision, to sit at the drawing board again and again until your direction aligns to benefit the entire supply chain. It’s something we at Zest Specialty Coffee, as a small to medium-scale specialty roaster, have no objection in doing to ensure our direction benefits the entire supply chain, the most vulnerable and most important members of our industry – the producers. Read more

A day in the life of a coffee trader

Cofi-Com’s John Russell Storey explores what really goes on behind closed doors at one of the country’s largest coffee traders, and just how many coffees are actually consumed.

Cofi-Com’s Operations and Trading Manager Dariusz Lewandowski and I are between origin trips at the moment. We’re giving our passports a rest and wistfully reminiscing about the last plantations and the folks we saw and talked to. That being said, two weeks ago Dariusz snuck in a quick trip to Papua New Guinea. Read more

Campos Coffee Will Young

The ones that sparkle: the key to the longevity of specialty coffee

Dubbed the Academy Awards of coffee, the Cup of Excellence celebrates the world’s best coffees. Campos Coffee Founder Will Young explains why the competition is key to the longevity of specialty coffee.

Getting your hands on a Cup of Excellence (COE)-winning coffee takes patience and commitment. The real fun for Australian buyers starts in the early hours of the morning when international online auctions commence, but the game’s not over until a final bid is made, the countdown clock expires, and the hammer falls.

“The longest auction I’ve ever experienced was early 14 hours for a COE coffee,” says Will Young, Campos Coffee Founder and Chairman of the Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE), the association that runs the COE competitions and auctions.  Read more

Jody Leslie

Toby’s Estate appoints Jody Leslie as General Manager

Toby’s Estate General Manager Jody Leslie on her career in food service, diving head-first into specialty coffee, and preparing for long-term growth.

In her short time as General Manager of Toby’s Estate Coffee Roasters, Jody Leslie has already seen how the Australian coffee scene differs to the rest of the world.

“Compared to the United States for instance, Australia has a larger focus on specialty coffee,” Jody tells BeanScene. “If I had a theory as to why, it would be around the age of our coffee industry. It matured around the same time as the rise of specialty coffee [globally]. Read more

Energy Bar

Energy Bar provides power on the go

MICE2019 Product Innovation Award winner Energy Bar allows cafés and mobile sites to operate demanding equipment without access to a large power supply.

The World Surf League tours Australia every year, bringing the world’s best surfers to the country for a chance to brave the waves and claim a championship title. Under-the-counter espresso machine manufacturer BrewBar saw an opportunity to showcase its units at surf events, but hit a roadblock when the league moved to follow the waves.  Read more

Protecting Australian coffee’s borders

Australian Subtropical Coffee Association’s Rebecca Zentveld on how to keep Australia’s coffee growing industry pest and disease free.

Thanks to Australia’s geographical isolation, it is the only coffee-producing nation in the world that is free of coffee leaf rust and the coffee berry borer pest.

It’s also thanks to Australia’s rust-resistant cultivars that Australian coffee growers enjoy the unique position of being able to grow naturally spray-free coffee in a cooler, subtropical climate. 

However, with such isolation comes a degree of vulnerability, and we are always at risk of introduced pests and diseases. 

Rebecca Zentveld is an Australian coffee specialist, Owner of Zentveld’s Coffee Roastery and Plantation, and President of the Australian Subtropical Coffee Association.

If coffee pests such as the berry borer or leaf rust were to arrive on our plantations, the Australian coffee growing industry could be wiped out. 

Farmers can only do so much to ensure that Australia’s coffee crops remain free of pests and disease. We also rely on the people visiting and working with international origins to be on the lookout, such as baristas and roasters, the ones who could accidentally introduce these pests to the country.

To avoid introducing pests and diseases to Australia, be aware of the following risks and rules. 

  • When returning from visiting origin plantations, you could inadvertently bring back coffee leaf rust spores on your clothes and shoes. Spores aren’t visible, but cling easily to clothing and textured material. The berry borer beetle can easily get caught up in folded clothing, or in a backpack or camera bag. Shake your clothes out thoroughly for any little critters.
  • Never bring home hessian or jute coffee bags from origin. Also avoid bringing back small samples of green bean. If you do bring back small samples, treat them like the biosecurity hazard that they are and keep them isolated. Leave hessian bags at your roastery, and above all else, do not place anywhere near a coffee tree — even if in a garden or a pot. Leaf rust spores can last for weeks on hessian bags, and become active under the right conditions. 
  • Only use green beans for roasting. Do not germinate green beans yourself, or contract a local nursery to do so. This is illegal because the biosecurity risk is immense. The biosecurity protocols for importing coffee for roasting do not cover the purposes of growing coffee, which is far more stringent. Australia’s legitimate, law abiding coffee importing companies know and strictly communicate that any green bean they sell is for the purposes of roasting, not growing.

Back on home soil, there are, however, a few simple steps you can take to ensure Australia’s coffee production remains fruitful.

  • At the roaster: Keep hessian bags separate from everything else and dispose of hessian bags responsibly. Thoughtfully repurposing for art or craft work is ideal.
  • When returning from origin: At international arrivals, do the right thing and declare your coffee farm visit to the quarantine officers and get your shoes sprayed by the biosecurity officer. It only takes a few minutes. Also, wash all clothes, boots, jackets, and bags soon after returning home. 
  • When visiting an Australian coffee plantation: Either soon after returning from origin or after being in your roastery, tell the plantation staff where you have been and be sure not to have the same bags, boots or clothes.

If we all take biosecurity seriously, we can help prevent any breakout or transference of the dreaded coffee pests and diseases, and Australia’s coffee growing industry can bloom without fearing the future. 

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