I have worked with farmers and scientists around the world in every stage of coffee production from the nursery to green coffee storage. I can help create a production system from the ground up, or improve your current production system to maximize yields, efficiency, and coffee quality.
I am a coffee scientist by training and I continue to engage with the coffee science community, scientific literature, and active research.
For businesses or individuals interested in understanding specific questions related to coffee, I can review and summarize existing literature in an accessible, easy-to-read report. If the questions at hand have not yet been answered, I can design and conduct research to help find answers.
For researchers, I am available to collaborate on projects. I have broad interest across disciplines and topics and I am especially interested in coffee production, agroforestry and shading systems, peaberries, factors influencing cup quality (on and off the field), indicators of origin, assessing and recording cup quality, and sensory science.
Coffee is everywhere, but it’s also a bit mysterious. And people drink coffee for different reasons, in different styles, and with different expectations. Between those two ideas -- complexity and diversity -- there’s a lot to say about what coffee is and how it gets consumed.
Frankly, educating others about coffee is my passion. I love connecting with an audience interested in learning about coffee, and I have many years of experience helping people move beyond what they already know within the huge story of coffee. I do this through a variety of platforms, including in-person seminars, cuppings or tastings, and public lectures. I have also worked with SCA to teach online modules on coffee production and processing, and have a range of tutorials that can be taught online or in person. If you or your organization have specific educational needs, I can create custom curricula around your desired set of topics.
As an educator, I understand that informational needs and tone differ between groups, and I’m comfortable moving between more-and-less technical ways of teaching and translating conceptual information. I can help high school students understand coffee plant biology, and investors understand risks associated with industry processes. I can help farmers get an idea of how specific management practices will impact their production, and I can teach advanced quality principles to coffee competition judges. I can help individuals understand what they are tasting in their morning coffee, and what they like. Or don’t like. I believe everyone deserves access to useful information.
With some 1000 coffee farms in Hawai‘i, finding the ideal Hawaiian coffee, green or roasted, to suit your needs is overwhelming. I have 20 years of experience working with coffee farmers in the islands, and I have an intimate understanding of the different islands and growing regions. Moreover, I have operated a roaster-retailer for the last six years and am well versed in sourcing coffees that meet the range of customer preferences while not sacrificing quality or complexity.
Knowing the nature of your coffee quality is crucial for being able to communicate effectively with your customers and for deciding how to properly market your coffee.
I have twenty years of professional training and experience assessing coffee. For eleven years, I’ve made professional assessments for the retail market. I earned a Q-grader license in 2011 and I have participated in five coffee competitions, including running the 2017 Kona Coffee Cultural Festival cupping competition. Whether you need help understanding green or roasted coffees, I can assess the product and provide a detailed quality analysis that will help you decide the next steps for your coffee.
For assessing cup quality, I use a proprietary system that differs from the 100-point system popularized by the Specialty Coffee Association and the Q-grader program. Despite its prevalence, I have deep reservations about its subjectivity, which undermines its usefulness as a tool to communicate about coffee between producers and consumers. My system is not numeric -- I provide a description of the coffee that is as objective as possible, based on the intensities of seven basic characteristics and the presence of any additional taste descriptors. While I don’t calculate a coffee’s 100 point score, I can provide an estimate upon request.
A version of my cupping sheet is available here.
Coffee is a big industry, one that can be intimidating. However, that should not get in the way of any company’s desire to develop an in-house product line or to carry someone else’s product.
Coffea Consulting will work with you to understand your needs and help you develop and acquire the materials you need to ensure you develop and own the best product for you.
Ever wondered who grew that coffee in your cup? Or how it came to taste that way? Come to Hawai‘i to learn everything you need to know about coffee’s journey from tree to bean to beverage. Uniquely accessible, Hawai‘i’s coffee industry is also subtle and rich in history, tradition, and diversity.
We offer customizable tours tailored to your interests and schedule. Farm tours take you behind the scenes of growing and processing coffee beans. Roasters turn green coffee into a drinkable beverage, while cafes help consumers figure out how coffee fits into their lives, and lifestyles.
Every step along the way, you’ll connect with people who are passionate about coffee.
In Hawai‘i, there is a law that regulates the blending and labeling of coffees. If a company wants to blend a local coffee and name the origin on the package, then the package must contain at least 10% of that named origin and it must be labeled a certain way. Many people dislike that the …Read More...
Finally, the Coffea Consulting website is getting a long overdue overhaul! The old site was stale, details were out of date, and many of the links were broken. It is now functional, attractive, and current! Coffea Consulting is going through a refreshing moment. There is renewed attention being paid to the business, its offerings, and …Read More...
Savor Brands is a packaging company that specializes in retail bags for the coffee industry. Their interest in compostable bags led them to hire me to research the state of compostable coffee bags and evaluate the true level of sustainability that the bags can offer.