Introducing the NCA Next Generation Newsletter

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Editor’s note: The NCA Next Generation group is a growing initiative to support young professionals who are passionate about coffee, and develop future leaders across the industry.

Ready to get involved? We’re now accepting applications for three non-officer positions on the NCA Next Gen Council. (While NCA Next Gen is open to everyone, NCA membership is required for Council positions.)

Learn more about NCA Next Gen, or join now. The NCA Next Gen Council will be presenting a breakout session at the NCA 2018 Convention in New Orleans – hope to see you there!

 

In this new and fast-paced world, keeping current with industry news and events can be demanding.

The NCA Next Generation Council is proud to announce our new series of newsletters to help keep you, the next generation of leaders in the coffee industry, up to date on all things going on in the coffee world. (Check out the inaugural issue here.)

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Coffee Drives Restaurant Industry Growth

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Coffee sales are making a big difference in the otherwise sluggish restaurant industry, according to a recent article in the Chicago Tribune.

Chain coffee shop locations increased by 6% from 2016 to 2017, reflecting increasing interest in high-quality and specialty coffee across the country. The U.S. has almost 3,000 more coffee shops than it did five years ago.

So what makes coffee special?

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What’s Ahead for Coffee’s Next Generation

“As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” — Bill Gates

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Meet the crema of the crop.

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The NCA Next Generation initiative was launched last year to help support talented young professionals who are passionate about the coffee industry. (NCA membership is not a prerequisite to join.)

Led by a volunteer board of emerging leaders, the Next Gen group has worked for the past year to develop new networking opportunities, professional development programming, and NCA social media initiatives.

The first Next Gen Breakout Session will be held at the NCA 2018 Annual Convention on March 15 in New Orleans. The educational session will include leadership lessons, investment insights for a young adults, and information on how to get involved.

Here, Brandon Jackson, Vice President in Commodities & Logistics, Brown Brothers Harriman, and the first Chair of the NCA Next Gen Committee, talks about why we need new voices to help guide the coffee industry’s future – and what to expect next.

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Phyllis Johnson on Networking at the NCA Convention

NCA Convention 2018 – Phyllis Johnson Testimonial from National Coffee Association USA on Vimeo.

 

Phyllis Johnson is the president of BD Imports, a coffee retailer with a focus on social responsibility, and a member of the NCA Board of Directors

Here, she talks about the unique opportunities to connect at at the NCA Annual Convention, which will be held this year in New Orleans, March 15-17.

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Year in Review: Our Top 5 Coffee Posts of 2017

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2017 was a big year for coffee.

What – and where – we drink is changing. Specialty trends moved into the mainstream, from the cold brew craze to the rise of RTD. Today, consumers have unprecedented control to customize their beverage, from unique flavors to nutrition-driven additives (oat milk, anyone?).

To reflect how these changes are reshaping our industry, the NCA even added a new “gourmet” category to our National Coffee Drinking Trends report.

Yet at the same time, the fundamentals of coffee remain as relevant as ever.  Whether you’re a brewing beginner or a brilliant barista, understanding the basics of what makes a quality cup is still crucial to developing and refining new brew methods and flavors. For instance: Extraction will always be a factor, and your equipment needs to be clean.

We’re looking forward to what the next year will bring – we’re seeing a lot of exciting new research on coffee and health, opportunities to improve industry best practices, and critical developments in sustainability.

But the New Year is also an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been. Here are the most popular NCA blog posts in 2017, highlighting the importance of both innovation and tradition in the world of coffee.

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Data Snapshot: Building Resilient Coffee Farms

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A New Industry Guide for Renovation & Rehabilitation

Coffee-growing regions around the world are feeling the impact of aging trees and diseases (such as coffee leaf rust, pictured above), on the quality and supply of coffee. Supporting responsible coffee farm renovation and rehabilitation is crucial to the future of coffee, and the longevity of our industry.

That’s why the Sustainable Coffee Challenge, in partnership with USAID’s Bureau for Food Security and  Dalberg Advisors, has released  a new Guidebook for Roasters, Traders, and Supply Chain Partners

The Guidebook is a comprehensive resource for companies, governments, investors, and service providers interested in undertaking Renovation & Rehabilitation (R&R) efforts; it:

  • Defines the need and makes the case for renovation and rehabilitation
  • Provides practical & useful tips on how to structure R&R programs 
  • Suggests ways that different stakeholders can engage in R&R
  • Presents case studies and links to experts and service providers

R&R investments are critical for ensuring the continued supply of coffee and meeting future demand. While governments and actors in coffee value chains have invested USD 1.2 billion in R&R so far, this has only met around 5% of the smallholder farmers in need

According to the Guidebook, if the industry did reach these farmers in need of R&R, benefits would include more coffee, higher incomes for farmers, and reduction in future deforestation.

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What Upsiide Tells Us About Coffee Production and Consumer Perception

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By Michael Edwards, Dig Insights

Upsiide is a new idea screening app that is inspired by Tinder. Designed by Dig Insights (the experts behind the NCA National Coffee Drinking Trends Report), the mobile platform connects companies to real-time consumer feedback and powerful analytics.

The concept sounds complicated, but it’s simple to use. Here’s how it works:

Survey respondents using the app are shown an idea (a potential claim, a new beverage idea, a packaging idea, a branding idea a positioning idea, etc.). The idea can be expressed with any combination of text, images, and/or video. The respondent swipes right or left to like or dislike the idea, or can request more information. Once two ideas are liked, they are paired head-to-head for the respondent to indicate which concept they prefer most. The winning concept is advanced to the next round of trade-off.

The NCA used Upsiide to test how consumers react to coffee production information, including certifications, information about the farms where the coffee is grown, information about the coffee strain used in the product, etc.

So, what does Upsiide tell us about coffee production information?

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How Many People in the United States Drink Specialty Coffee?

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2017 U.S. Specialty Coffee Consumption Trends Infographic

The full version of the following post was first published on SCA News

By Heather Ward

Specialty coffee consumption in the U.S. is growing, and 2017 saw a significant increase in daily specialty coffee drinkers.

Over the last 18 years, the number of daily specialty coffee drinkers has consistently increased, strengthening the consumer demand for specialty coffee.

Let’s take a closer look at the data.

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