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Weekly Coffee News: James Hoffmann ‘Decaf Project’ + Bellwether Enters Korea

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James Hoffmann Launching ‘The Decaf Project’ 

Revered specialty coffee professional, author and influencer James Hoffmann is launching The Decaf Project, which will culminate in a global public tasting of roasted coffees that have been decaffeinated through three different processes: ethyl acetate; Swiss Water; or supercritical CO2. Green coffee trader Caravela Coffee is supplying approximately 230 70-kilo bags of green coffee for the project. Hoffmann and Caravela are currently seeking roasters who will ultimately commit to purchasing and roasting the coffees, with an eye toward direct-to-consumer sales for an online global coffee tasting event.

Bellwether Expands to South Korea with Kijeong International Deal

Electric roaster maker Bellwether Coffee has expanded into the South Korean market through a partnership with coffee equipment company Kijeong International. The news follows Bellwether’s expansion into Japan in September 2023 and its growth into Europe in December 2023. The company also recently launched a smaller countertop machine.

ICO Monthly Report Sees Robusta at 45-Year High

The April monthly global commodity coffee market report from the International Coffee Organization showed a 45-year high in the average price of robusta coffee, at US$1.936 per pound. Find the full report here.

Fairtrade Premium Approached $240 Million in 2022

Fairtrade International‘s latest monitoring report found that Fairtrade premiums across all agricultural product categories neared €223 million in 2022, a 10% increase from the year prior. According to the group, 231,188 metric tons of coffee were sold by producers in 2022. 

Chinese Coffee Giant Cotti Opens First US Store

Fast-growing Chinese coffee chain Cotti Coffee opened its first coffee shop in the United States, in a strip mall on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. Since launching in 2022, the company known for aggressively low coffee drink pricing has opened more than 7,000 coffee shops, primarily in mainland China.

Gentleman Baristas Co-Founder Launches Roasting Brand, All Things Bloom

Henry Ayers, the co-founder of the original Gentlemen Baristas coffee houses in the UK, has launched a new coffee roasting company called All Things Bloom in London. The roasting outfit is focused on high-quality traceable coffees and long-term partnerships.

UK’s The Coffee Chain The Coffee House Snags $5 Million Investment

Northwest England-based coffee chain The Coffee House has secured a £4m ($5 million) investment from AJ Bell founder Andy Bell and his retired business partner, Fergus Lyons, according to a report from MCA. The investment will be used to accelerate regional growth.

Tony’s Coffee Releases 2024 Impact Report

Bellingham, Washington-based Tony’s Coffee, a 2021 Roast magazine Roaster of the Year, released its 2024 sustainability report. Among the interesting findings was that the company used 8% less natural gas in roasting while roasting 8% more coffee on the year. Find out how in the full report here.

Victoria Arduino Opens Thailand Showroom

Italian espresso equipment brand Victoria Arduino, part of the Simonelli Group, this week opened an official store and showroom in Bangkok, Thailand, through a partnership with the Aroma Group.

Hawaii Coffee Association Taking Submissions for Annual Competition

The Hawaii Coffee Association has opened the submission period of its annual statewide cupping competition. Click here for more info on the 15th iteration of the competition and the HCA annual conference, taking place in July.

New from


Through Sound, Scientists Transform Espresso Machine Into Quick Cold Brewer

Researchers in Australia have successfully converted a home espresso machine into a sonic reactor that they say can produce desirable cold brew in mere minutes, as opposed to a period of hours or days… read more

Mikael Jasin of Indonesia is the 2024 World Barista Champion

Mikael Jasin of Indonesia earned the crown of World Barista Champion on Saturday, leading a fiercely competitive field of 53 competitors from all over the world… read more

Hawaii Legislature Approves Landmark Coffee Labeling Bill

The Hawaii State Legislature yesterday approved a bill that may dramatically reshape how Hawaiian-grown coffees are packaged and sold… read more

The iRhea Automatic Pourover System Enters US Coffee Shops

A new high-tech brewing machine from South Korea called iRhea recently made its way to the the United States, offering customizable automatic pourovers for commercial settings… read more

Three Questions with Firaol Ahmed of Moii Coffee

On Friday, April 12, as thousands of coffee professionals were gathered in Chicago for the Specialty Coffee Expo, Saint Louis University junior Firaol Ahmed was lacing up his track shoes in Southern California… read more

Squeaky Coffee Tools Enter the International Market with a Bang

A new coffee accessories and equipment brand called Squeaky Coffee demanded the attention of the coffee world last month at the SCA Expo in Chicago, winning a Best New Product Award for one of several new releases… read more

The Acaia Astra Helps Older Scales Keep Their Star Power

India Coffee Report: Weather Hurts Production as Robusta Demand Soars

Combined production of robusta and arabica in India is expected to hold relatively steady at approximately 6 million 60-kilo bags for the 2024/25 market year, with a prolonged dry period affecting what would otherwise be an “up year” in the biennial crop cycle… read more