Your guide to our Ethiopian profiles

Coffee is a very important agricultural export for the Ethiopian economy, and has therefore been very tightly controlled by the government. Until very recently, all coffee traded in Ethiopia was bought and sold through the Ethiopian Coffee Exchange (ECX). This entity inspected every lot of coffee, assigned it a grade according to its quality (Grade 1 being the best), and assigned it a regional profile such as Yirgacheffe or Guji. These regional profiles reflected the Read more…

Plan your buying for 2021

ME: Hey it’s Alec from Nordic Approach! Just calling to ask about your coffee planning for 2021 🙂 🙂 YOU, A COFFEE ROASTER, IN 2021:  Um, what? Yeah, I know. It’s been a year. But we’re still here and so are you, and people still need coffee. So how should you approach coffee planning this season? Every roaster is different but there are a few things every roaster can benefit from. 1. Define your current Read more…

Uganda, everything we knew it could be

We are blown away by the quality coming from Uganda this season. With twin challenges of the global Covid-19 pandemic and climate change, we were expecting a drop in quality from Uganda this harvest. Instead they have improved quality and consistency across the board.  Uganda is a relatively new origin for us. Morten began establishing projects in 2018 with a focus on the naturals and special preps. These processes give our offers a lot of Read more…

Your guide to the current harvests

It’s an exciting time of year — so many origins are in harvest, and so much great coffee is coming our way! What can we expect from Ethiopia, Kenya, Honduras, Colombia and Uganda this year? Our buyers give us an update. Ethiopia The harvest this year was earlier with higher yields. Last harvest the rain continued to the end of December but this harvest it stopped in early November in most regions, Yirgacheffe being the Read more…

Special Preps Webinar Wednesday Dec 2

Wednesday Dec 22pm CET Love them or hate them, these new styles of coffees have taken hold. But beyond the profiles, be they crazy delicious or just straight crazy (depending on your preference), what do these new fermentation methods mean for our industry? We’re teaming up with our friends at Cropster and experts across the value chain for a free webinar. We’ll explore these new methods, the science behind the process, what flavours they add Read more…

Our dream team in Brazil

This year has been one of the most exciting seasons in my experience of working with Brazilian coffees, which seems strange considering the circumstances. I have been traveling to Brazil and working with coffee producers there for the past four years. When making decisions about which coffees to buy and which coffees not to buy, who to develop relationships with, and what our selection should look like, I keep coming back to the same idea Read more…

Colombia Harvest Update October 2020

In any normal year I would be visiting Colombia between July and August, and then again at the end of November leading into the beginning of December. These would be our primary trips for coffees from across Nariño, Huila and Tolima when we would be able to meet with producers, see the harvest and gain insights into how the internal production and market is functioning for the season. Depending on the area I would either Read more…

Your guide to our Special Prep coffees

Anaerobic Fermentation, Saccharic, Lactic, Skin Contact — you might have seen these terms on our offers list lately. We call these “Special Preps”, and the names all refer to different methods of fermentation which lead to unique and novel flavours in the cup.  However, there are a lot of different terms for these new styles of fermentation and processing, which can be confusing for roasters and their customers. Here is a guide to the names we Read more…

Peru Harvest Update

I have said this before, and I will keep saying it: the quality of coffee we are sourcing in Peru is outstanding, given the low income, general lack of infrastructure, and scarce equipment for post harvest processing.  Peru has impressed us again this year, both in terms of quality, and the commitment from producers and our export partners. I can’t wait to see how this origin develops over the next few years. That said, it’s Read more…

Securing the coffee you need in a pandemic

You might have noticed our offers list is not as long as it used to be. There are a couple of reasons for this. Previously we planned our buying based on past years’ experience which gave us a pretty good idea of your coffee needs. But then pandemic came and shook our industry like a snow globe. Until the shaking stops, no one can really say how anything will land, so we’re a little more cautious with our Read more…

Rwanda 2020 fully pre-booked

Did  you know the word “crisis” originates from a Greek word that means “decision”?  We have all been in crisis mode for the better part of the year, and six months in, we’re seeing a distinct change in our industry, and the vital importance of firm and early decisions.  Shifting supply and demand The overwhelming feedback I have received from customers all over the world is that the demand for micro-lots has seen an incredible Read more…

Indonesia Harvest Update – Frinsa Estate

What to expect Indonesians will be on the water soon and will arrive earlier than ever before. We will have a range of delicious clean washed coffees, and we have expanded our volumes of the experimental preparations we began last year. Plus, we’ll have a selection of naturals.  The different fermentation methods involve bacterias like Lactobacillus and Saccharomyces, anaerobic and partially anaerobic environments. Last year these coffees flew off the shelf, so if this is Read more…

Sourcing in the time of Corona

Origin travel suspended Traveling to origin has been the cornerstone of our buying since this company was founded. Every year we travel to each of the coffee growing origins we work in at least once, often several times, to meet with export partners and producers, explore farms and check out the dry milling facilities, and of course, to cup coffee and make selections. Many of you have joined us on these trips, and you know Read more…

The impact of COVID-19 at origin, and how it might affect your green buying

We are all staring into the crystal ball, trying to predict how our industry will look in the aftermath of the curfews and lock downs. Everyone in the specialty coffee value chain is adapting on the fly, and that includes importers. We are working to keep everyone in the value chain in business, which means adjusting our own buying plans for the remainder of the year, and finding ways to help you adapt and plan.  Read more…

The impact of COVID-19, survey results

Our recent survey into how the restrictions in place to contain Covid-19 have affected our customers paints a diverse picture. There isn’t a single experience. The full impact of Covid-19 depends on your country, your city, your business model and how you have been able to pivot, if at all.  We know anecdotally that web shops are a lifeline for many of you, and they may have turned your buying strategy on its head. However Read more…

Ethiopia 2020 Harvest Update

There is no such thing as business as usual in Ethiopia. Every season has its unique set of challenges, but this year has been a little crazier than usual, even before Covid-19 hit. At the beginning of the season cherry prices were almost double those of last year. Then in mid-season, the industry was hit with a new minimum price directive that threw contracts into disarray. On a positive note, new and exciting coffee profiles Read more…

Ever changing Kenya

If you ask most green coffee buyers about Kenyan coffees they will reminisce about back in the day, when Kenyan coffees used to taste the way Kenyan coffees should taste. How much of this is due to nostalgia versus reality, even I am unsure. What we do see is that the landscape of Kenyan coffee production has changed dramatically over the past years, and continues to do so. Kenya is a country of dwindling coffee Read more…

Huge potential in Uganda

Last summer I went back to Uganda, following up on a project we started in 2018. While there I visited the West Region and launched some new projects. These initiatives in Uganda have yielded some amazing coffees which are on their way to Belgium, estimated to arrive in port on March 28th. We believe that Uganda will play a significant role in the specialty coffee industry of the future. There are great coffees here, plus Read more…

Finding the perfect sample roaster for you

Finding the right equipment for your business might seem like an impossible task. With so many different manufacturers and models, it’s an ocean of opportunities. Kaya, manager of the Nordic Approach lab, asked some of our customers how they made these decisions.  If I were to start a roastery tomorrow, I would have an army of ROEST machines. Four different coffees on the line. One roaster for each. One profile for each. That would be awesome. But hey! AINT NO Read more…

Finding the perfect roasting machine for you

Finding the right equipment for your business might seem like an impossible task. With so many different manufacturers and models, it’s an ocean of opportunities. Kaya, manager of the Nordic Approach lab, asked some of our customers how they made these decisions.  Your roaster is a big investment and you know you need to do your homework. If you make the right choice, it will be with you for many years, but what should you Read more…

Women we admire in coffee

In honour of International Women’s Day this Sunday, we honour a few of the women we admire in our value chains.  Natalia Brito Garcia, Brazil Natalia is the reason we buy coffee from Brazil. We didn’t source coffee from Brazil until we met her, now we buy all our Brazilian coffees through the specialty programme she established. Natalia is a passionate advocate for smaller farmers in her region, and works to find them a stable Read more…