For decades, Indonesia has supplied coffee roasters worldwide with prized beans that give a distinctive taste to brews favored by connoisseurs. Most locals, however, preferred tea. But now, as younger generations switch to coffee and hundreds of independent coffee shops and roasters pop up across the archipelago, Indonesia’s consumption of beans is rising. That’s left less coffee for export and forced up prices for foreign buyers. A small harvest in Sumatra has eaten further into tightening supplies of that region’s unique arabica beans, which are sought for the heavy, earthy notes they give to roasted blends. Sumatran beans are a key component in Starbucks Corp’s Christmas Blend, which has been sold for more than 30 years. Sumatra’s lower production caused some exporters to delay and even default on deliveries, sources at importing companies said, forcing some U.S. importers to pay more to secure supplies. Inventories in the United States have dwindled, … [Read more...] about Indonesia’s growing thirst for coffee drains premium bean supplies
Common man coffee roasters
VietNamNet Bridge - Twenty-one tons of coffee in Dak Nong province made of battery powder have been seized as ‘dirty coffee’. However, no one can define what ‘clean coffee’ means. According to Nguyen Viet Vinh, secretary general of the Vietnam Cocoa and Coffee Association (Vicofa), one of the hottest issues now is the absence of national standards for roasted coffee. As a result, roasters add non-coffee elements into real coffee and sell their products as ‘genuine coffee’. “The lack of national standards for roasted coffee places difficulties on agencies to control coffee quality in the market, while ‘mixed’ coffee is labeled as genuine coffee,” he commented. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) has set up two standards related to coffee processing. These include national standards for coffee processing units and national standards for coffee beans. In principle, coffee roasters must declare … [Read more...] about What is the standard for ‘safe roasted coffee’?
Major European coffee buyers such as Nestle are struggling to obtain supplies of premium robusta beans after heavy rains in Vietnam last year wreaked havoc on the crop in the world's biggest producer. Major European coffee buyers such as Nestle are struggling to obtain supplies of premium robusta beans after heavy rains in Vietnam last year wreaked havoc on the crop in the world's biggest producer. Coffee roasters with strict requirements about the quality of their robusta beans, a cheaper variety than arabica and used for instant coffee, are rejecting deliveries, traders said. Roasters complain the coffee is musty and bitter, having been soaked last autumn by heavy rains during harvesting, when farmers lay the coffee cherries out to dry. The weather damage can also be seen in the colour -- more beans than usual are a brown or black hue rather than the typical pale green colour of raw coffee. Nestle, the world's largest coffee company, has been hit particularly hard, traders said, … [Read more...] about Europe’s coffee roasters hit by poor bean quality after Vietnam rains
PANO - "I came to General Vo Nguyen Giap's house yesterday, but I cannot see him anymore and was not warmly received by him like the two previous times. Although he has passed away, his warm embrace reserved for me at my first visit to his house remains as fresh as if it happened yesterday," said Almos Maksay, whose Vietnamese name is Mac Son, a Hungarian-Australian ethnologist, after offering incense to General Vo Nguyen Giap whom he has long respected and admired. Earlier, having learnt about General Vo Nguyen Giap's passing away from his Vietnamese wife while he, his family and some Hungarian friends were visiting Hung Kings Temple, he quietly bought a box of incense coils to offer to commemorate the legendary Vietnamese General. Maksay, who always considers himself a common person, is nevertheless proud of being one of the lucky ones, among common foreigners, to have had a chance to meet the legendary Vietnamese General who garnered such worldwide admiration. >> … [Read more...] about A common man’s impression of General Vo Nguyen Giap
Many people living in Ho Chi Minh City, particularly of low income strata, are looking for alternative modes of domestic energy to replace cooking gas cylinders that have become increasingly more unaffordable to the common man. Gas companies in the city have once again increased the retail price of a 12kg cooking gas cylinder by VND42,000 this February, which will now cost VND428,000. Within the last two months, the gas retail prices have been hiked three times, amounting to a total hike of VND74,000 on a 12kg cylinder. According to the gas companies, the world gas prices have gone up to US$145 a ton forcing them to raise the domestic price as well. This increase on an essential commodity like cooking gas has brought more financial burden on people with average income of around VND2.5-3 million a month. As a result they have turned to alternate means for cooking, like coal briquettes. Luong Thi Nguyet Anh, a garment worker from Binh Tan District earning only VND2.4 million a month, … [Read more...] about Domestic cooking gas unaffordable to common man