Coffee is a Hot Commodity Symposium
at Valdosta State University 2011
About 175 students, faculty, and members of the community attended the 2-hour event. Four knowledgeable coffee professionals talked about the coffee industry from their unique perspectives. Students from Beta Alpha Psi welcomed attendees, recorded the presence of students, and generally kept order at the coffee area. Everyone got the chance to taste delicious coffee from Tanzania, Brazil, and Guatemala.
Our wonderful panelists were:
Terry Davis has a B.A. in International Studies and Economics from the University of South Florida. After college he co-founded, and then managed Ambex, Inc. a manufacturer of coffee roasters and roast control systems; New Harmony Coffee & Tea, a retail roastery; and Cinnamon Bay Coffee Roasters, a wholesale roasting and distribution brand. Currently, Terry is busy working on the launch of an indigenous coffee brand, Juan Tama Coffee, that utilizes new traceability technologies to provide consumers with unequaled access to information about indigenous coffee growers and the issues that surround them, including: sustainability, fair trade, indigenous rights and quality assurance. Additionally, he is busy with his new consulting business Summa Coffea Academy- specializing in food traceability systems, new product development, product launches, and training. He has written extensively on coffee and small business issues, and his writings can be found here: http://www.ambexroasters.com/information/related_reading.html
In a former, younger life, Terry was a U.S. Navy Rescue Swimmer. And is currently a member of the Tampa Bay Area Committees on Foreign Relations. He also founded and administers the Davis Demitasse Poetry Contest, a contest open to anyone, working anywhere, at any job in the coffee industry.
Ricardo Pereira owns BRASC Coffee Importers in Greenville SC. He is a licensed "Q" Grader (coffee cupper), a certified SCAA Lead Instructor, and is fluent in English, Portugese, and Spanish. He holds a BA degree in Youth Ministry from Bob Jones University.
Born and raised in the coffee-rich Alta Mogiana region of Brazil, Ricardo has firsthand knowledge not only of this coffee region but also of the Brazilian business culture. Ricardo recognized the need for an American supplier of high quality Brazilian coffees, so building upon his experience as a purchasing agent in Brazil and the U.S., where he dealt with the global supply chain in Europe and South America, he launched BRASC in 2007. Ricardo adopted Greenville, SC as his home away from home 10 years ago, where he met his beautiful wife and where their 2 daughters were born.
The five basic principles guiding them toward this goal are:
- Happy People
- Agriculture within a Productive Forest
- Carbon Sequestration
- Producing and Providing Natural Food
Andrew is a Senior Coffee Trader at Royal Coffee New York, where he has worked for the last 6 years. He has a BA in Communications, and is certified as a professional coffee cupper and USBC (US Barista Competition) judge.
Andrew’s work takes him from his fast-paced New York trading desk to the sometimes remote, tropical regions of the world where coffee is grown. When he is not tracking movements in coffee futures prices, pricing and selling green coffee, and managing their coffee warehouse logistics in the U.S., he is traveling the tropical regions of the world, feet on the ground, and building relationships with coffee farmers to connect the demand-supply circle. Through people like Andrew, coffee farmers better can understand what buyers in the U.S. want, and improve their crop quality and their profitability accordingly.