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Reflections On 100 Year Anniversary
One hundred years is an important milestone in any industry but especially in the world of coffee where the business is about as erratic as the futures exchange. At N.J. DOUEK & SONS we can appreciate this event as we are celebrating fifty years of importing coffee. My grandfather started the business and I had the privilege of learning the ins-and-outs of green coffee from my father who built it up. The company has witnessed many changes in the trade. I often hear stories of how my father and grandfather would visit customers with samples in hand and how they had firm offers from exporters at fixed prices for a whole week. There were no “differentials” back then, no computers, no email or instant messaging. Telegrams with code books were common and when the telex machine came out it was considered “state of the art.”

It is still nice to see however, that the “cycle” of coffee seems to always be at play and that many traditions remain in this closely knit family.

Congratulations Tea & Coffee Trade Journal and I hope the pages of your magazine will be filled with many positive and exciting stories for many years to come! - Phil Douek

New Alliances
Quality-Packaging Incorporated, an engineering services company known throughout the North American coffee industry for their coffee packaging as well as the supply and support of ICA S.p.A. packaging equipment has recently formed an alliance with Brambati S.p.A.

Quality-Packaging Inc. will act as the exclusive US. and Canada representatives for Brambati S.p.A. Brambati S.p.A. is a leader in coffee roasting and handling equipment. They offer a full line of equipment capable of handling the needs of any size plant (cleaning, roasting, grinding, conveying, storage). Franco Pistoni is the Italian based sales manager, who will be heading up the U.S. and Canada market with Gregg Pascoe, engineering sales manager for Quality-Packaging Inc.

They plan to be a supplier of equipment throughout the North American coffee industry. Quality-Packaging can now supply their customers with a complete coffee processing and packaging plant from green bean processing to state of the are market proven packages.

Green Mountain buys Frontier Organic Coffee
Green Mountain Coffee Inc. said it acquired Frontier Natural Products Co-op’s Frontier Organic Coffee brand, its trade information, and various other assets related to its coffee business for about $2.7 million in cash, including estimated transaction costs.

Green Mountain said it financed the acquisition through its existing line of bank debt. Frontier Organic Coffee, one of the largest importers and roasters dedicated to 100% certified organic coffee in North America, recorded sales last year of more than $3.5 million, it said.

“The Frontier Organic Coffee acquisition is designed to be immediately accretive to earnings, although its impact is not expected to be material due to the size of the transaction,” said Robert Britt, cfo of Green Mountain. “While we expect the effect on this fiscal year’s financial results to be essentially neutral, going forward it should enhance Green Mountain Coffee’s efforts to meet our goals for growing both our top line and, particularly in view of our ability to finance this deal at current variable interest rates of approximately 5%, our bottom line.”

PROBAT Acquires Majority Holding In Leogap
Brazil is a highly-desirable objective for coffee experts. The largest country in South America is second in worldwide coffee consumption, and at five percent per annum the actual leader in consumer growth.

As a producer of roasting machines and installations, PROBAT has been committed in Brazil for a long time, although it has often failed to achieve a more thorough penetration of the coffee market until now because of import restrictions and high customs duties on importation.

The Emmerich company has now opened up new marketing opportunities with the acquisition of a majority holding in Metalurgica Leogap S.A. This company was founded in 1963 and is among the market leaders in Brazil, with PROBAT technology always serving as a model for its own products. From now on the full PROBAT roasting and plant technology is available to the Brazilian enterprise.

Leogap general manager Rolf Kepper will continue to head the company as a fellow partner. His detailed knowledge of the market will enable him to extend PROBAT’s success in Brazil. But the participation in Leogap does more than open up commercial opportunities for PROBAT. It is also evidence of PROBAT ís consistent pursuit of its customer and market oriented activity. As general manager Heinz Jammers says: “We are where our customers are.”

Pod Pack launches New Round Filter Pack
For Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based Pod Pack International, Inc., it was their worst nightmare. The company, which specializes in manufacturing private label espresso coffee pods, had just been informed by their packaging company that they would no longer be supplying film. Adding insult to injury, the supplier was already six weeks behind on an order of multiple private label film items.

“We were in desperate need of a reliable, responsive supplier,” says Thomas “Tom” Martin, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Pod Pack. “We have customers throughout North America and Central America who count on us to convert their coffee beans into espresso pods and place the pods into pouches with their logos. So, we couldn’t afford to miss an order. Fortunately we found Sonoco Flexible Packaging. They stepped up to the plate, started making (printing) plates, running film stock, and as a result of their willingness, we haven’t missed an order since.”

In less than six months, the relationship, which began as an emergency, has evolved into a very tight, very loyal bond. Today Sonoco supplies Pod Pack with printed, three-ply, heat-sealable film in roll stock form for nearly 30 different pod private labels. The film is automatically made into protective pouches, which are nitrogen flushed and provide a one-year shelf-life for the espresso pods.

Sonoco is now assisting Pod Pack in the launch of new round and square filter packs, providing different barrier film to protect the filter packs. Pod Pack can now manufacture private label filter packs featuring a unique round filter pack design called the Square/Round.

Despite Mother Nature’s Fury, Coffee Fest Perseveres
Mother Nature arrived with fury at the same time Coffee Fest was opening their 28th show in Atlanta, GA at the Cobb Galleria Center, June 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. Five inches of rain over the two days caused heavy traffic delays, accidents and even fatalities. Lightning strikes and a convention center fire were just a few of the obstacles that were encountered during Coffee Fest Atlanta.

For the first time in Coffee Fest’s ten-year history, weather became a factor for attendance. Attendees were given the unenviable task of braving the torrential storms the whole weekend that dumped three inches of rain in the area on Friday and two more on Sunday. Exhibitors experienced an evacuation of the Cobb Galleria on Sunday after lightning struck the building causing a fire. Everyone stood in awe, according to David Heilbrunn, show manager, as they watched lightning strike cars, poles and a concrete wall just 50 feet from the crowd as they were waiting for the clearance to reenter the building.

Despite Mother Nature’s best efforts, Coffee Fest Show Management reports a 95% exhibitor satisfaction rating. It was obvious that the serious attendees braved the weather to take advantage of Coffee Fest’s triumphant return to Atlanta after a five-year absence. “We were fortunate to have the turnout that we did. I have never seen weather like we saw this weekend," said Heilbrunn. “We will be talking about this show for a long, long time and can only speculate that without the weather, how phenomenal this show could have been."

Bucks Country Coffee Gets Friendly With Colombian Coffee Growers
Rodger Owen, president and founder of Bucks County Coffee Co., announced a major endowment program to benefit the Colombian coffee growers of the community of San Lorenzo, in the department of Caldas. The newly launched, Relationship Coffee Program between Bucks County Coffee Co. and the Embera-Chami tribe of San Lorenzo is being facilitated by the Colombian Coffee Federation (CCF).

“We are delighted to be introduced to the Embera-Chami tribe - growers of the unique and wonderful La Vereda coffee. Our new partnership is exciting for us-to have the opportunity to reward the families of the tribe for their extra care. Our customers too, are excited to join the partnership, they love the coffee!” said Owen, who started the specialty coffee business in his garage over 18 years ago.

“The relationship coffee program, which ensures both the quality that the roasters need and the remunerative income that growers need, is an innovative way to underlie how communities of consumers and producers belong to the same industry and can establish partnerships of mutual benefit,” said Alvaro Villegas, president of CCF. “We at the Federation believe in the need to provide quality coffee in the long term,” continued Villegas. “For over 70 years we have also believed in the need to provide the quality of life of our growers, and this agreement with Bucks County Coffee guarantees both.”

Tea & Coffee - August/September 2001
Modern Process Equipment


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