Specialty contract coffee roasting and green bean sourcing company WKSHOP considers not simply the origin of the coffee, but also region, altitude, variety, climate and process method when selecting the correct coffee.
By WKSHOP Head Roaster Paul Golding.
For roasters, green bean sourcing remains a vitally important task hidden behind the roar and drama of the roasting machines. Blends are only as good as the raw materials, making sourcing one of the key pillars of quality. As with any agricultural product, coffee is inclined to change subtly or substantially from season to season. As consumers tend to expect their favourite cup to stay faithfully the same, green bean buyers must remain intimately connected to the product, and highly agile in their purchasing decisions.
At WKSHOP we employ a range of sourcing strategies, beginning with the relative importance of each bean in the blends, and a comprehensive risk assessment of its availability and consistency. When assessing each coffee, we’ll consider factors such as uniqueness of flavour, shipping distance and lead times, political and environmental stability of the origin country, and quantity produced. Coffees with a higher risk score will require greater commitments in terms of forward ordering and inventory holding, while low-risk beans can be held “short”, saving space and money.
Our sourcing is diversified across local wholesalers, export companies located at origin, farmer cooperatives, and some farm direct sources. The choice of which option to apply is governed by who might have the strongest relationships with the producers and be best able to guarantee the supply on a sustainable, long term basis with the lowest risk and most reasonable cost.
Read the full article in the latest issue of Convenience World magazine.
*Images supplied by WKSHOP.