loring

Loring roasters: An investment in the future

Loring customers discuss the many ways they benefit from fuel savings, reduction of greenhouse gases, and operational optimisation not possible without the highly efficient roaster.

When it comes to coffee roasting, Loring has become synonymous with sustainability.

The trademark of Loring is its patented roasting system, which uses a single burner to both heat the air for coffee roasting and incinerate smoke created during the roasting process.

Not only does this remove the need for an external afterburner, it also means less energy is required to heat the air to an optimum temperature compared to air brought in at room temperature. This has a huge impact on the energy used and emissions produced. It also provides a higher consistency from roast to roast.

“By switching from a conventional drum roaster and afterburner to a Loring roaster, a coffee roaster can reduce their gas consumption by up to 80 per cent, with a huge saving of carbon emissions too,” says Loring Australia Representative James Banman.

“We’ve been seeing strong demand from Australian and New Zealand coffee roasters that want to hit new goals around sustainability. But that is only one reason we’re seeing people looking to Loring.”

Melbourne-based contract roaster YourCoffee installed its first two Loring S70 Peregrine roasters in 2017. Brothers Trevor and Steven Simmons founded YourCoffee to apply the specialty coffee expertise they had built running sister company Industry Beans to largescale private customers. Trevor says Loring had the right equipment to make that happen.

“The idea behind YourCoffee was to incorporate the fundamentals of specialty coffee roasting – small batch roasting, post-roast blending – into a scalable model that would allow us to achieve exceptional quality at high volumes in the most efficient way possible. We found when looking at the different large-scale roasting machines, with 150 to 300-kilogram batch sizes, that it would be difficult to maintain that approach in a meaningful way.” Trevor says.

“Instead, by utilising the two 70-kilogram-capacity Loring roasters, we were able to incorporate them into the smart, controllable, and flexible production line that we developed inhouse that lets us roast coffee to order at the highest quality, regardless of the order size. It’s a completely unique approach to larger-volume roasting and the results have been fantastic.” 

Thanks to the success of the Loring roasters, Trevor and Steven began transitioning to Loring roasters at Industry Beans too. The specialty roaster has Loring S15 Falcons at its flagship venues in Newstead, Queensland, and Fitzroy, Victoria, as well as an S7 Nighthawk set up at its recently opened venue in Chadstone Shopping Centre, Victoria. The low emissions roasting and scalable and transferable roast profiles of Loring allows Industry Beans to roast onsite alongside and within their cafés, to create a truly immersive specialty coffee experience.

“Having a Loring roaster means we can have centralised product development. We can develop roast profiles on the seven-kilogram model, then once we’re happy with them, roll them out across the larger fleet,” Trevor says.

“The great thing we find with Loring roasters is that you can scale a roast profile design on the S7 right up to the S70. So, as we continue to grow the business, we don’t have to change everything to accommodate higher volume. We want to be modular, and each new Loring is like adding a new section to the same machine. When we roll out a new profile we’ve developed on the S7 in Melbourne, the team in Newstead can be sure it’s been tried and tested, and that they’ll execute it just as well on the S15.”

The sustainability aspect of Loring also aligns with where Industry Beans is going as a business and what YourCoffee’s clients look for in a roasting partner.

Loring roasters have a smaller footprint in more ways than one. When it came time for Rumble Coffee Roasters in Kensington, Victoria, to upsize its roasting equipment at the start of 2021, Head Roaster Matt Hampton says the Loring S35 Kestrel ticked all the boxes.

“We don’t have a huge amount of space and didn’t want to have to move to a larger location. We’re also quite close to apartments and housing, so not having to run an afterburner was another big factor,” Matt says.

“By our math, with the Loring roaster we’re roasting about three times as much coffee per batch compared to the old roaster while using the same amount of gas. It’s also taking up about half as much space as other roasters with a similar capacity.”

Scaling up its batch sizes has given Rumble more time to focus on other aspects of the business, like quality control and customer service. It did not take the team much time to adapt to using the new roaster, which Matt says was helped by support from Loring.

“We had someone come here for two days to go through the machine, make sure it was set up properly, then spend a whole day training. Not many manufacturers will go to that much trouble unless you’re getting a much bigger roaster,” Matt says.

“We also have a direct line with Loring in the United States and if any issues come up, they can jump right into the backend of the roaster’s software and see why an alarm has gone off.”

Ultimately, Matt says Rumble sees the Loring as an investment in the future, for itself and for the planet.

“We’ve kind of future-proofed ourselves for the next three to five years. We have the room to grow our business without having to move,” he says.

“The coffee roasting side of the industry doesn’t get talked about as much as it should when it comes to sustainability, but that’s changing. The more that we can save on electricity usage, gas usage, and our emissions, the more sustainable the industry will be as a whole.”

Over in New Zealand, the coffee industry is seeing a similar growing appreciation for sustainability. Megan Piper, General Manager of Maven Coffee in NZ, says Loring roasters are not only sustainable, they’re a sensible choice when governments are cracking down on excess emissions.

“In addition to our own personal desire to be a good corporate citizen, we are, of course, dealing with a natural product here, that depends on the health of our environment, so the industry must play its part,” Megan says.

Mathew Johnstone, Head Roaster at Maven Coffee, says the Loring 35 Kestrel stands out for its sheer efficiency and versatility.

“I’ve had experience with quite a few coffee roasters, and I don’t think you can get the consistency and flavours you get from Loring roasters anywhere else,” he says. 

“Because of its heat efficiency, the roast chamber’s heating time is greatly reduced, which allows you to turn over roasts much quicker. We’re getting as much roasted on the S35 Kestrel as I have before on much larger roasters.”

This gives Maven Coffee the freedom to play around with its coffees, easily jumping from small batch lots and single origins to large volume roasting for multinational businesses.

“We generally develop a profile manually first, save it, then use the Loring’s Roast Architecture software, which allows you to fine-tune the roast profile. From then on, the roaster will consistently hit those marks. There’s a lot of different coffee roasters in NZ and it’s a competitive market, so that guaranteed consistency is a good selling point,” Mathew says.

Megan adds that the sustainability of Loring provides a business incentive for prospective customers.

“Other companies want to know they’re doing the best they can for the environment too, so when you’re doing a lot of business-to-business work, being able to talk about the advantages of the Loring roaster is great,” Megan says.

“As we know, sustainability is only going to become more and more important. What’s viewed as acceptable and unacceptable from a business is going to change and it’s important that coffee be at the forefront.” 

For more information, visit www.loring.com

This article appears in the June 2021 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.

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