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Daylight Mind Talk Story — coffee quality

Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, Part 4: The Profiles.

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Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, Part 4: The Profiles.

This blog was originally published at Daily Coffee News on September 25, 2017 The first three parts of this series laid out some of the problematic issues with current competition scoring systems, ways in which we might better define a winning coffee in a competition, and how we’d use that definition in practice for a competition. With an understandable and clear definition, contest entrants and observers can better understand and engage with the competition. Also, having a definition facilitates a much more objective assessment. This post describes one example of how competition stakeholders developed a definition, as well as what...

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Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, Part 3: Determining the Winner

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This blog was originally published at Daily Coffee News on August 2, 2017. The first two parts of this series laid out some of the problematic issues with current competition scoring systems, and ways in which we might better define the winning coffee in a competition. With an understandable and clear definition, contest entrants and observers can better understand and engage with the competition. Also, having a definition facilitates a much more objective assessment of all the coffees entered in the contest. This post describes how the entrants can be assessed, and how to choose a winner of the contest....

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Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, part 2: Defining the Winning Coffee.

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Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, part 2: Defining the Winning Coffee.

The blog was originally posted on Daily Coffee News on July 17, 2017. In part one of this series, I discussed some of the flaws in current competition scoring systems. One major flaw is that no system defines what a winning coffee is. In other words, nobody defines what a perfect, 100-point coffee should taste like. How can a winner be chosen if there is nothing to compare the sample to? How can a competitor know what coffee to submit if they don’t know what taste profile to aim for?   In the development of a new competition scoring system, I...

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Reimagining Cupping Competition Scoring, Part 1: The problem.

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The blog was originally posted on Daily Coffee News on June 12, 2017. Since 1987, there has been a cupping competition at the annual Kona Coffee Cultural Festival. In this competition, 50 to 80 farms compete to be recognized as the best in Kona. Like other coffee competitions, a handful of judges cup through the coffees a number of times to determine the winner. Over the years, the scoring system used for the competition has evolved and has recently settled on the fairly commonplace 100 point, Specialty Coffee Association scoring system. While the SCA scoring system is familiar and revered by...

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Coffee Berry Borer, six and a half years on

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Coffee Berry Borer, six and a half years on

A few weeks ago, the Hawaii Department of Agriculture published a press release confirming that the coffee berry borer’s (Hypothenemus hempei, CBB) presence was confirmed on 2 farms on Maui.  While this news hit us pretty hard, it wasn’t particularly surprising.  CBB was first identified on Hawai‘i Island in September 2010.  About two years ago, it was detected on O‘ahu.  CBB has been here and on our radar for 6.5 years.  In that time, the industry responded in a predictable, perhaps even typical, way.  In the immediate aftermath, we discovered we were unprepared and shocked.  There was plenty of panic...

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