WBC, WBrC, World Cup Tasters to be Held at HOST Milan in October

The WCIGS, World Latte Art, and World Roasting Championships in Taipei have been postponed.


Cover photo by Kenneth R. Olson, Barista Magazine

The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) announced today that the World Barista Championship (WBC), the World Brewers Cup (WBrC), and the World Cup Tasters Championship (WCTC) will take place in conjunction with the HOST Milan exhibition in Milan, Italy, October 22–26. The competitions were originally scheduled to take place at the World of Coffee show in Athens, Greece, in June 2020, which was cancelled due to the global pandemic.

The SCA also announced the postponement of the World Latte Art, World Coffee in Good Spirits, and World Coffee Roasting Championships previously scheduled to take place at the Taipei International Coffee Show November 19–22 due to a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in Taiwan. “The SCA and [Taiwan Coffee Association] are working to identify opportunities to host World Coffee Championships in Taipei at a future date,” according to a press release from the SCA.

Traditionally, past WBC Champions offer commentary during the livestream of the World Barista Championship finals round, which hundreds of thousands of viewers tune in to watch each year. Pictured here, from left: Berg Wu of Taiwan, 2016 WBC Champ; Pete Licata of the USA, 2013 WBC Champ; Hidenori Izaki of Japan, 2014 WBC Champ; Sasa Sestic of Australia, 2015 WBC Champ; and Dale Harris of the United Kingdom, 2017 WBC Champ, watching the livestream during the final round at the 2018 WBC in Amsterdam. Photo by Kenneth R. Olson, Barista Magazine.

The new date for the WBC, WBrC, and WCTC gives national champions just over three months to prepare. Adding to the complexity is the instability of many participating countries’ COVID-19 status; how many competitors will be able to travel to Italy? We hope every national champion will have the opportunity to compete on the world stage; however, if we’ve learned anything over the course of the pandemic, it is that both the near and distant futures are unknown.

The HOST Milan event is the biggest hospitality show in the world and takes place at the massive Fiera Milano convention center every other year. 

HOST Milan is the largest hospitality expo in the world. Photo courtesy of HOST Milan.

“We are extremely pleased to announce the 2021 World Barista Championship, World Brewers Cup, and World Cup Tasters Championship will be featured at HostMilano this October,” said Yannis Apostolopoulos, SCA chief executive officer, in the press release. “We’ve always found massive value in attending HOST, and following the hardship and disruption of the past year, I’m excited to return and bring our community to this wonderful show.”

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Sarah Allen (she/her) is co-founder and editor of Barista Magazine, the international trade magazine for coffee professionals. A passionate advocate for baristas, quality, and the coffee community, Sarah has traveled widely to research stories, interact with readers, and present on a variety of topics affecting specialty coffee. She also loves animals, swimming, ice cream, and living in Portland, Oregon.