The London Coffee Festival and SCA Expo in New Orleans are among the coffee events currently scheduled to take place in September.
BY ZECHARIAH MOSS
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE
Cover photo courtesy of Melbourne International Coffee Expo
This month, we highlight a few events that will continue in September. For the latest guidelines on COVID in the United Kingdom, you can visit the Department of Health and Social Care. The United States’ guidelines are outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Specialty Coffee Expo
Note: Hurricane Ida caused tremendous damage to New Orleans and Louisiana when it came ashore on Aug. 31 and many services in the area have been affected. What effect it will have on the show is unclear. As of now, the SCA says the event will go ahead as planned, but it is monitoring the situation as it progresses.
The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) is bringing their beloved Expo back to the United States this month. Having had to cancel the last in-person event scheduled for April 2020 in Portland, Ore., the SCA has been busy creating content on their social media platforms. They have hosted a slew of interviews and four months of digital workshops over the last summer. Excited to return to an in-person format, the Expo has been one of largest coffee gatherings in North America.
Communications coordinator for the SCA Grace Freeman says regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, “We know these are uncertain times, but we continue to work hard to provide a space for the coffee community to gather safely once again, and we are excited to get back to business at Expo. The Specialty Coffee Expo may be a little different in 2021, but it remains the best opportunity for the industry to gather, do business, and make coffee better.”
The Expo will feature hundreds of exhibitors displaying their new products and services. Exhibitors will also be competing for Best New Product and Coffee Design Awards, including the technology category, associated with the exclusive SCA Certified Commercial Equipment Program. “Those seeking educational experiences will find dozens of lectures by industry experts from around the world, as well as workshops and courses from the SCA’s educational programs, covering a wide array of topics of interest to coffee professionals,” says Grace.
When asked about a digital presence for this year’s event, Grace responds, “We are not hosting a virtual Expo this year, as we found that interest in an online Expo waned and we could not provide the value we strive for, so we are focusing all of our resources on a safe in-person event. However, our upcoming Green Coffee Summit event is a new, free-to-attend virtual event and resource library, [which launched from] August 25-26. It is designed for anyone involved in the green coffee trade to find reliable, actionable knowledge about coffee markets.”
You can attend the New Orleans-hosted Expo, September 30 to October 3. If you can’t attend in person this year, check out all digital resources at the SCA’s website and Instagram for more coffee knowledge.
London Coffee Festival
After opening an online school and hosting multiple events online in the last year, the consumer- and industry-focused London Coffee Festival is returning to in-person programs. The 10th anniversary event will feature 250 local gourmet food and beverage vendors as a part of the United Kingdom’s coffee week. Attendees and local business owners will gather for a split event weekend for both lovers and sellers of coffee.
If you’re in the coffee business, you can catch the industry-exclusive days beginning September 23. General admission begins the following day at 4 p.m. on September 24. The four-day event will feature competitions, interactive labs, product sampling, live music, and art galleries—all between the regularly scheduled workshops. As extra incentive for ticket purchasers, 50% of the proceeds go back to the native coffee-growing regions via Project Waterfall, a nonprofit planting clean water systems around the globe.
Melbourne International Coffee Expo Canceled
A recently postponed event, the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (or MICE for short), pushed their big 2021 return to next year. Media representative Sarah Baker says, “This year’s show is canceled but we have been announced to host the World Brewers Cup (WBC) and World Barista Championship (WBrC) at MICE 2022 also.”
Normally seeing an attendance upwards of 11,000 people, tacking on two world-platform competitions will make MICE the place to be next year. Stay updated on the attending vendors and ticket sales through their website and Instagram.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A multigenerational native of Charlotte, N.C., Zechariah Moss quit the restaurant industry after a decade to pursue his love of creative writing. While unable to escape his love for coffee, he moonlights as a freelance ghostwriter/copywriter for friends and businesses. His office is found in multiple coffee shops across the Carolinas.