You may have heard about algrano already. They won SCAE World of Coffee Award for the best new IT and Tech innovation when they launched at Gothenburg 2015 and have been making waves ever since with their online platform making it easy for coffee roasters and growers to know each other, interact and buy / sell green coffee. They also help enable the export and delivery of green coffees in a transparent way, all through their online marketplace.
They currently have a network of 248 producers, 381 roasters across 57 countries around the world.
We were really impressed by the way they have leveraged technology to help facilitate meaningful direct trade and help reward producers for improved coffee quality.
Through their online platform, producers can post information about themselves – including photos, farm information, coffee production, tasting notes, awards, and any other information they would like prospective customers to know.
As a prospective customer, you can browse their Current Offering of containers, made up of different micro lots with cupping scores and notes, and if you’re interested, request a sample before making a decision to purchase. Then algrano makes sure you get your coffee delivered at the right time.
We first started working with algrano when Rafael Marques, algrano’s local quality partner in the state of Espirito Santo, Brazil, set up a mobile lab to visit coffee producing communities and train growers on the quality of their coffees. His ‘lab’ is incredible (photos below), and includes and IKAWA Pro Sample Roaster which enables him to roast and cup in the most remote places – you can read algrano’s post here.
We got excited about the prospect complimenting algrano’s supply chain with consistent IKAWA sample roasting throughout the chain. From origin (as Rafael has pioneered), through export & import, right through to roasters’ coffee evaluation process.
algrano have been roasting samples since they became a customer in May. They roasted samples for their cuppings at Dublin World of Coffee from the IKAWA on their stand, and recently trialled the concept of adding an IKAWA sample roast profile for their recent Nicaraguan and Guatemalan microlots to the coffee information on their site. This creates an opportunity for Roaster customers to roast the samples in exactly the same way as the algrano team, and evaluate the coffee on a consistent basis.
The chain is complete when an algrano customer who owns an IKAWA Pro Sample Roaster can use the roaster to evaluate the samples – which is something that Benjamin Hohlmann, Swiss Brewers Cup Champion 2014 from Kaffeemacher has been doing. Benjamin was also the ‘face of the roaster’ in algrano’s stylish trade show stand – – as he bought an exceptional semi-washed coffee from Sebastião Cassine from Espirito Santo in Brazil, also pictured below.
This story has been inspiring for us to see unfolding, as we believe the IKAWA Pro Sample Roasters offer the opportunity to create a common language of coffee sample roasting, and believe greater transparency can help both producers, the industry and ultimately the coffee drinking public.
Find out more about Algrano.