Coffee News Recap, 5 May: WAC confirms more national competition hosts, Vietnamese robusta production set to fall to four-year low & other stories


Every Friday, Perfect Daily Grind rounds up the top coffee industry news from the previous week. Here are this week’s stories.

Mon, 1 May

Westrock Coffee publishes 2022 Sustainability Progress Report. The report highlights the company’s key environmental and social sustainability activities from last year, including increasing global purchases of certified and verified responsibly-sourced coffee by 9% – amounting to an increase of over 19.5 million lbs.

Nomad Coffee Group achieves B Corp certification. The group – which includes Veneziano Coffee Roasters, Black Bag Roasters, Coffee Hit, and Flight Coffee – implemented several new initiatives to receive the certification, including its Volunteer Time Off Policy and Parental Leave Policy, as well as improving waste management and coffee sourcing programmes.

World AeroPress Championship announces more confirmed national competition hosts. New confirmed hosts include Five Elephant for the Germany competition, I.A.C. and Benki Brewing Tools for the Indian championship, and The Barista League for the Swedish event. WAC also confirmed that competitors will not be able to use the new AeroPress Flow Control Filter Cap as part of the competition.

Luckin Coffee reports 84% year-on-year increase in 2023 Q1 revenue. The Chinese coffee chain also stated it opened 1,100 net new stores during the analysis period – totalling more than 9,300 stores in China so far.

Tue, 2 May

Starbucks surpasses expectations and reports 14% net revenue increase in 2023 Q2 financial results. The results were largely driven by strong performance in North America and a sharp recovery in China following store closures during the pandemic.

World Coffee Research creates new membership category for B2B roasters. The new category applies only to B2B roasters who focus solely on roasting and manufacturing products for third parties. WCR says the revised category will help to make its operations more transparent and equitable.

Vietnam’s robusta production likely to drop in 2023 as more farmers grow durian fruit. According to Bloomberg, the country’s 2023/24 coffee harvest is likely to be the lowest in four years, largely because growing crops like durian is more profitable for farmers.

Restaurant Brands International reports 17.9% sales growth for Tim Hortons during 2023 Q1. The Canadian coffee chain opened 300 new stores during the analysis period, totalling 5,620 global outlets – including the first location in Pakistan.

FairWave Holdings acquires two more US coffee brands. The company, which describes itself as a specialty coffee collective, has made undisclosed investments in Folly Coffee and Philtera Cold Brewed Coffees.

Wed, 3 May

Registration opens for World of Coffee Athens. Visitors can now apply to attend the event, which will take place from 22 to 24 June at the Athens Metropolitan Expo centre. Submissions for this year’s Coffee Design and Best New Product Awards have also been extended to 23:59 on 5 May.

Blue Bottle Coffee partners with musician The Weeknd on new Ethiopia-focused Samra Origins range. The new line will launch on 9 May with a limited release of the Exceedingly Rare Ethiopia Cup of Excellence Wolde Faye Koricha for US $65 per 100g. Blue Bottle will also launch several Samra Origins blends later in the year.

NKG Stockler forms regenerative agriculture-certified coffee farm collective. The first seven Regenagri-certified farms are in Cerrado Mineiro, Brazil, with plans to expand farming practices in other coffee-growing regions.

Next year’s National Coffee Association convention to take place in Nashville, Tennessee. The annual event will be held from 7 to 9 March 2024, with more details to be announced soon.

Thu, 4 May

Starbucks appeals US judge’s ruling over unlawful firing in Memphis union case. The company’s lawyer claimed employees in Memphis were fired for violating a company safety policy after opening the store without consent and allowing members of the press inside. Starbucks has said it reinstated the workers despite disagreeing with the judge’s ruling.

World of Coffee Research publishes new Robusta Variety Catalogue. The new guide profiles 47 robusta varieties from countries including Brazil, India, Indonesia, Uganda, Mexico, and Vietnam. The catalogue also outlines several different variables, such as yield potential, stature, bean size, nutrition requirements, lineage, and susceptibility to pests & diseases.

illycaffè reports 13.2% year-on-year global revenue increase for 2023 Q1. In Italy and the US, revenue respectively grew by 10.7% and 27.7% compared to the same period in 2022.

Colombian coffee production fell by 9% during last 12 months. Total production so far in 2023 has also fallen by 6% to 3.26 million 60kg bags – largely attributed to higher rainfall levels and lower fertiliser application because of higher prices.

Fri, 5 May

Melbourne International Coffee Expo announces sponsors for first-ever Richest Barista competition. Sponsors of this year’s event are Dalla Corte, the Alternative Dairy Co., Naked Syrups, and Riverina Fresh. Competitor registration will open soon, and the competition will take place at MICE from 17 to 19 August 2023.

Hawaii Coffee Association to host this year’s annual conference, trade show, and cupping competition on 15 to 17 June. The event will also include a new latte art competition, interactive workshops, and seminars about fermentation, and will be held in Lihue, Kauai.

ICO Composite price reaches highest level since September 2022. Between March and April 2023, the ICO Composite Price Indicator increased by 5%, averaging around 179.51 US cents/lb during the period. Average prices for all group indicators increased in April 2023, while global green coffee exports decreased by 9.6% to 10.90 60kg million bags.

FoodBev Awards to launch first edition of World Coffee Innovation Awards. Winners are shortlisted across a number of categories, including Best Milk Alternative and Best RTD Product. Entry opens 5 May and the winners will be announced at the 2023 Caffè Culture event in October.

Here are a few coffee news stories from previous weeks that you might find interesting. Take a look.

Wed, 19 Apr – McDonalds trials cold brew at Southern California locations. The fast food chain is testing out new black and Marble cold brew drinks.

Wed, 26 Apr – Caffè Vergnano signs exclusive distribution partnership in United Arab Emirates. In partnership with hospitality solutions provider STREE, the Italian coffee company will supply its HoReCa products to restaurants and hotels in the country.

Wed, 26 Apr – Oatly signs its first-ever global airline partnership with SWISS International Air Lines. The airline will serve RTD Oatly Caffè Lattes onboard all of its flights.

Thu, 27 Apr – Nestlé uses Airbus satellites to monitor reforestation. Airbus’ Pléiades Neo satellites will monitor more than 150,000 shade trees on coffee farms in the Ranong and Chumphon provinces of southern Thailand.

Thu, 27 Apr – Keurig Dr. Pepper reports 1.3% decline in coffee sales during 2023 Q1. K-Cup revenue, however, grew by 2.9% during the analysis period.

Fri, 28 Apr – Lavazza appoints new Board of Directors. The Italian coffee company announced Giuseppe Lavazza as the new Chairman and Alberto Lavazza as Honorary Chairman. Marco Lavazza has also been reappointed as Vice Chairman.

Fri, 28 Apr – Value of global coffee capsule market to be worth US $11.9 billion by 2032. Allied Market Research states the market will grow by 7.6% during the analysis period.

Photo credits: World AeroPress Championship

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