WBC2012 and hockey

Dany Marquis

In the last week I published several links concerning the WBC2012 (World Barista Championship) which took place in Vienna. Despite my chronic lack of time I watched some performances. You can also take a look at the finale here:


Here are the results:

1st – Raul Rodas, Guatemala
2nd – Fabrizio Sención Ramírez, Mexico
3rd – Colin Harmon, Ireland
4th – Miki Suzuki, Japan
5th – Stefanos Domatiotis, Greece
6th – Maxwell Colonna-Dashwood, United Kingdom

Looking at the performances, we realize the evolution of the coffee industry around the world. In previous years, the ice rink was mainly occupied by baristas, independent coffeeshop owners, who allowed the emergence of what was called the 3rd wave. The competitions were dominated by Americans supported by specialist roasters. The coffee industry has taken giant steps in inspiring thousands of people to embrace this path and open a coffee shop with the love and passion felt watching these coffee freaks. The path was paved and many of us followed this road.
But this year, we can plan a different tangent which turns out to be very interesting. For the 2nd year in a row, a barista from a coffee producing country (Guatemala) wins the WBC, the #2 is also from Mexico!
I like to compare the WBC to the world hockey championship. It's as if the Ethiopians had learned to skate before us, had dominated the competition, and we Canadians had realized that we knew how to skate too, we live on the ice! And after a little training, we take our rightful place.
For me, it is only natural to see a domination of coffee-producing countries. It's like their national sport, they were born into it!
The very nature of the development of the coffee industry, as a commodity product imported at very low prices by multinationals, exported and consumed in the countries of the North, has created a distortion in the level of expertise of participants in the coffee chain. From simple farmers, producers are now participating more actively in regaining control of the coffee chain by promoting it. We can also include the Cup of Excellence in these actions.
We can only rejoice and view this development with humility. No matter how much I know, he will never grow coffee in our house. I am confined to a buyer's role, remaining ignorant of one of the major parts of coffee production, agriculture. This is what will initiate the 4th wave of business coffee.
If we want to learn to play hockey, we come to Canada. If we want to learn how to make coffee, we go to Guatemala!

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