Now fully settled into its global specialty coffee headquarters in Greenville, South Carolina, green coffee importer Ally Coffee has expanded its formal and community-based professional education program for the remainder of 2019 and beyond.
The company recently completed its first Q Arabica combo course and exam — required for the Coffee Quality Institute’s Q grader certification — since the move into the new headquarters. Also for the first time since opening in separate Greenville offices in 2014, the company is offering Q re-certification and retakes, the full Q course exam, and Q Processing Level 1 Generalist.
These classes are made possible by Ally’s cupping lab, which is designed to CQI specs, plus a service-ready coffee bar that includes multiple Mahlkönig grinders, a La Marzocco Linea espresso machine and a Nuova Simonelli Black Eagle espresso machine paired with a Nuova Simonelli ClimaPro grinder. The roasting room at the education headquarters includes an Ikawa and a Probat BRZ for sample roasts, plus Diedrich IR-2.5 and Atilla 5-kilo production roasters.
In addition to the Q-related courses, Ally is also expanding its “Communities of Practice” education program under the watch of Ally Coffee Director of Learning Ildi Revi. Rather than covering formal coursework and sanctioned exams, the program focuses more on practical, day-to-day operations, skills and knowledge for working coffee professionals. A pilot course in the program last year was designed for “cafe leaders,” while Ally is adding a cold-brew-focused Communities of Practice course this year.
“Communities of Practice are spaces for industry professionals, from novices to veterans, to meet and build the skills and community to better run their coffee businesses,” Revi said in a recent announcement of the program. “Participants take meaningful, applicable knowledge back to their workplaces to build businesses that are responsible, sustainable, profitable, and inclusive forces for positivity.”
Finally, Ally is this year offering customizable versions of two more house-made courses that were piloted last year, called Essential Food Safety for Coffee Roasting Operations and Roasting Principles and Practices.
A full list of upcoming Ally Coffee courses can be found here.