April 2018 - staying ahead
Date Posted:18 April 2018
“Life and death are illusions......we are in a constant state of transformation.” — Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu
Where have we been ?
Many of our lovely customers had contacted us worried we had disappeared or discontinued our monthly Newsletters.
March and April editions were not able to be published due to extreme workloads related to our major infrastructure program. Thank you to all those that checked in to see if everything was OK – it’s humbling to engage with such wonderful and caring clients.
keeping us in front
A few tears were shed when we bid farewell to our trusty friend “The Joker” – a supreme machine that knew no bounds of capacity or pressure, pumping out astronomical tons of coffee in the heady days of private label and contract roasting.
The Joker has found a new home with our good friends at Twin Peaks Coffee in Perth – they love their Joper’s and have the ideal family of 3 Jopers – small, medium and now large.
In July last year, we started another significant journey of change. A program originally conceived in 2014 and fundamental to securing our long-term future in our competitive industry.
Today, we are excited to introduce our new state-of-the-art platform - the most advanced and precise system available in the global market. Our new infrastructure utilizes intelligent, adaptive software to enable control of the roasting process with incredible consistency.
Every roasting system becomes part of our family and for sure each member of any family deserves a name – we call him “Optimus Prime” - he's a big unit, towering over the warehouse.
Commissioning new systems is hard-work and our solution is a “plant”, not just a roaster. It’s something most companies only do once a decade – the effort exceeds 1200 hours and the costs of implementation are expensive.
So why do we do this every 2 or 3 years ?
It’s our view the market for quality coffee needs to shift away from the hap-hazard, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants, social-media addicted, experimental, cavalier methods used by many “specialty” roasters. Specialty is not just about being small and giving the illusion of “innovation” by hyping up up the origin or providence of the raw bean. True specialty must extend into every aspect of the process until the product is at the point of consumption.
So much of coffee marketing is dedicated to the illusion of “craft”, imagery of “rock-star” baristas, and insta-worthy selfies of roasters hunched over small shop systems like mad-scientists. Reality is the craft brigade are just playing with their toys to learn how to roast properly - you see, with coffee some people think it's OK to get away with continual experimentation - heck some even give it a name "seasonal".
Even one of the large retailers has played ads on radio in high rotation claiming their cheap coffee is “craft roasted” – we know for a fact it’s not, but that doesn’t stop them from jumping on the bandwagon and spreading their perceived message of “premium” because the market and the industry is poorly regulated.
Our step change is into the realm of true industrial back-end, but retaining the flexibility of a nimble front-end to cater for the broad range in our portfolio. We will still roast a ridiculous number of different coffees every day, 6 days a week as our freshness and quality principles won’t shift.
It’s not an easy gig to maintain – taking a specialty approach to industrialized processes, but we think the time is right to stretch these parameters a bit further.