Today, at the near start of a new harvest, our Media & Relationship Manager, Michael, will have the opportunity to travel, on behalf of Cuatro M, to Medellin, Colombia; to attend an event hosted by Sustainable Harvest Coffee Importers (Portland, OR - USA), titled Let's Talk Coffee: The next generation of relationship coffee.
Over the course of the next week and a half, we plan to introduce, share some of his expectations for, give updates, and offer a final response to those things learned and experienced at the event; through some of the updates he sends and posts to his own blog: 'Coffee & the Bramble.'
Sustainable Harvest themselves, are a coffee importing company based in Portland, Oregon, whom we export coffee to, and work with throughout the coffee harvest; including various experiments in processing, within a project titled: 'Experimentos en Cafe;' the contents of which we have had the opportunity to share and teach about at their offices in Portland, during a two day workshop they hosted in February; which included lectures, discussion, and cuppings of each of the experimental coffees.
With offices and staff then based all over the coffee growing world, their business model structures itself around the idea of relationship coffee & transparency; meaning that their goal in importing coffee, is to do so from farmers that they have direct relationships with, and work with year round, and in a manner that is open and honest with the financial aspects of the buying and selling.
Beginning Thursday; and over the course of four days, lectures, discussion, and workshops will take place within the coffee producing country of Colombia, all related to the topic of specialty coffee, its development over the past decades, its state, and its future.
The idea or, theme of the event is, "the next generation of relationship coffee," which in essence promotes the principles of community, innovation, and growth. Since Cuatro M is a miller and supplier of coffee to Sustainable Harvest, they are providing for all of the expenses of Michael's trip while in Columbia, something they contribute to each individual coffee supplier they work with.
The event is for the purpose of joining farmers and millers with roasters to talk about themes within the coffee industry; joined together by the importer Sustainable Harvest.
In closing, some of Michael's thoughts on the coming event:
"Having spent the last few weeks reading over the program of events that will take place during Let's Talk Coffee, my head is packed with ideas that I desire to share and take away from the week. I am perhaps most excited to meet with other farmers and millers, and hear about the manner in which they have developed over the last decades as a result of both their work with Sustainable Harvest, and the specialty coffee industry.
Understanding the history of development within the coffee industry, and recognizing that the specialty industry is less than a half century old, I begin to realize that folks working today, are the very ones who have seen the most dramatic changes, and improvements; and can therefore attest most vividly to the development at work across the coffee growing world.
I am eager to hear those stories. I am eager to listen to folks talk about markets, and develop relationships various members of the specialty community. I am eager to put forth my questions regarding the still urgent need for development in much of coffee growing world, and to hear responses from folks who spend their careers making that happen."