For the first time in the talent show’s history, a participant from the host country has one the fourth edition of Barista & Farmer.
Diego Campos, 2014 and 2016 Colombian Barista Champion, was crowned the winner after 10 days in Huila, Colombia, living the daily life of a Colombian coffee farmer.
“It’s been the best experience of my life. I believe that this victory represents a better future for my country, and better opportunities for the farmers, and this is what I want for the future generations. Coffee, hospitality and beautiful people: this is Colombia,” Diego says.
Former Italian Barista Champion Francesco Sanapo created the talent show format in collaboration with Italian Exhibition Group and Sigep which gathered participants from 10 countries to compete in challenges and team events from 1 to 10 June.
The contestants discovered everything about the coffee culture of the region and toured the archaeological park of San Agustin, painted a Chiva, and danced the San Juanero Huilense in order to become ambassadors of Huila within each of the contestants respective countries.
The final results of other challenges in Barista & Farmer include team Six Monkeys, lead by 2011 World Barista Champion Alejandro Mendez winning the picking competition, a trial where baristas had to collect the most and better cherries; team Yukka Yukka, captained by Italian coffee lover Nino Conti, winning the Urnex competition; and Yukka Yukka, the overall team winner of the show, led by Diego Campos, Russian Vicktoriya Rovenskaya, Icelander Vala Stefansdottir, Brazilian Daniel Munari and Croatian Matija Matijasko. Australian Glenn Bailey of Grinders Coffee and Russian Vicktoriya Roveskaya won the Sanjuanero dance competition. Diego also won the picking competition.
“The overall balance of this experience is super positive because we raised the bar on every aspect, from the competitions to the production of the talent itself. We are already questioning ourselves on how to make the next edition even better,” Franceso says.
“I didn’t expect Diego to win. It’s been the first time, in four editions of the show, that the talent was won by the local barista. It’s been a special edition, you could easily tell by the closing ceremony where everyone cheered for the winner. I think that he won because he showed himself as a willing spirit, he always set the example: a guy of an endless sweetness who emerged as the leader and charismatic figure of the whole group.”
For the next edition of Barista & Farmer, Francesco says he has already received applications from several countries such as Ecuador, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Dominican Republic and China.
“I hope that others will follow them. I will evaluate the final destination with Italian Exhibition Group, Lavazza, Cimbali and all the other partners of this wonderful experience,” he says.
Juan Sebastián Gutiérrez Botero, Head of the Office of Productivity and Competitiveness of Huila says the alliances that this event has left between coffee producers and international buyers and exporters is an important pillar for Colombians. This includes reducing intermediaries as much as possible and the opportunity to manage academic agendas. “Coffee growers have reached agreements and alliances that will increase the coffee economy,” he says.
Luisa Fernanda Gallo, Advisor of International Relations of Headquarters Sent, added that Barista & Farmer has connected the Colombian coffe culture to baristas all over the world.
“As an institution part of the Colombian Government we were happy to host this important event and we hope this will be just the beginning of more opportunities to promote the Colombian Coffe and the incredible people behind the production of our national product,” he says.
To relive the Barista & Farmer experience, visit www.baristafarmer.com and on the social medias of the show.
To view the awards ceremony video, click here.