The Calibrating Coffee Sensory Plan: A new approach to coffee quality management

FlavorActiV Ltd, Coffee Enterprises and Square Mile Coffee partner to launch innovative sensory calibration program to raise global standards for coffee professionals


FlavorActiV Ltd., a global leader of beverage sensory and quality management solutions, and Coffee Enterprises, a distinguished coffee industry consulting and education consortium, have partnered to develop an innovative coffee sensory calibration program to address the challenges with inconsistent sensory evaluation and quality control testing for coffee. Top UK roaster Square Mile Coffee has also partnered with and contributed to the development of the program that has been designed to support coffee professionals around the world.

“FlavorActiV has developed industry leading technology and a strong history of success in training sensory professionals for quality control,” states Dan Cox, President of Coffee Enterprises. “With FlavorActiV’s wealth of experience with other arenas of beverages, the development of the coffee sensory calibration tools will be essential for roasters, traders, baristas, and producers around the world for improved quality control and education, not only for the premium and specialty coffee markets, but for all levels of coffee quality.”

When coffee sensory staffs are trained around the world, there is a huge variation across the industry. At each stage of the farm-to-cup process there are different values, practices and terminology associated with tasting and quality checking, and limited on-site training and comprehensive analysis. Dr. Javier Gómez López, Head of Coffee Sensory at FlavorActiV, said; “For quality control and sensory professionals, being able to correctly detect, identify and name faults without the inconvenience of waiting for faulty coffee to appear reduces the risk of undesirable (and brand-damaging) coffee reaching the consumer.”

The Calibrating Coffee Sensory Plan will officially launch at the November 2015 Café Show in Korea through a number of business seminars, presented on behalf of the trilateral partnership by Square Mile Coffee’s Head Roaster and UK Brewers Cup Champion, Sang Ho Park.

The comprehensive program consists of three components which will be made available in early 2016 as individual or bundled products:

  • Taster Training: On-site technical sensory panel training to improve sensory analysis and increase brand quality through sensory science protocols and industry best practices, conducted by Global Sensory Managers and coffee industry professionals.
  • Coffee Defect Taste Kits: Pharmaceutical quality GMP capsules of powdered-flavor standards, held in blister packaging, used to spike coffee for taste identification. Developed in collaboration between FlavorActiV, Coffee Enterprises and Square Mile Coffee Roasters.
  • Taster Calibration: Self-directed online validation series using anonymous coffee defect kits and powerful analytical software to test proficiencies. Blind samples are sent to test individual and panel tasting abilities and thereby direct future training in the most cost/time efficient manner.

All partners will be introducing the technical taste panel training and management products at coffee industry events throughout 2016. Developed with coffee professionals in mind, the Calibrating Coffee Sensory Plan is an innovative new approach to coffee quality management.

For more information, contact our Head of Coffee Sensory, Dr Javier Gomez Lopez, coffee@flavoractiv.com or visit www.flavoractiv.com/drinks/coffee

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About Coffee Enterprises: Coffee Enterprises is a professional coffee consulting group located in Burlington, Vermont who have decades of manufacturing, quality control, sourcing, product development, and marketing experience. Coffee Enterprises has the expertise to enhance the quality of your coffee products, services, and programs to improve the overall strength of your coffee business. For more information about Coffee Enterprises, please visit www.coffeeenterprises.com

About Square Mile Coffee: Square Mile Coffee Roasters is a multi-award winning coffee roasting company based in London. We are currently focused on wholesaling our coffee and to supply and support businesses that wish to serve the best coffee they can. We want to make London famous for good coffee. We’re working to build a London coffee culture and do our best to contribute to the global scene. For more information about Square Mile Coffee, please visit www.shop.squaremilecoffee.com

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