The Jakarta Post
Guests sample Indonesian coffee at the Ngopi Sore event held by the Indonesian Embassy in Washington DC, April 13. (Trade Ministry public relations/File)
The Indonesian Embassy in Washington DC held an event entitled Ngopi Sore, or Afternoon Coffee, on April 13. The event was designed to introduce coffee as a part of the Indonesian lifestyle and culture. The embassy also invited coffee shop owners, baristas, coffee brewers, importers and coffee enthusiasts to a sharing session about coffee.
Washington DC trade attaché, Reza Pahlevi said in an official press release, “We want to convey the story behind Indonesia’s premium coffee beans. US consumers are very interested in the story behind the coffee that they consume.”
The event featured a documentary film teaser entitled Legacy of Java, a continuation of a documentary titled Aroma of Heaven, which was featured in the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) Expo in Atlanta, Georgia in 2016. In the event, Indonesia was featured as Portrait Country.
Director of the documentary film, Budi Kurniawan said, "This is the second part of the ‘Aroma of Heaven’ heptalogy. The documentary focuses on the coffee scene in Java’s big cities from the point of view of coffee business owners. It also features the concerns of coffee farmers in villages about coffee sustainability.”
Budi hoped the documentary would provide US coffee businessmen with a new perspective about Indonesian coffee and encourage them to work with the farmers.
The Ngopi Sore event also featured a fun cupping session where guests were invited to taste several high-quality micro lot coffees, including Jawa Puntang, Jawa Bowongso, Aceh Gayo, Sumatra Tiga Raja, Sulawesi Rantemario and Flores Manggarai.
The event was also attended by staff from the Government of the District of Columbia, US Congress, a United States Agency for International Development (USAID) deputy director and several students from Maryland University.
Indonesia’s coffee exports to the US in 2017 were recorded at US$313 million, a 3 percent increase from the previous year. Indonesia is the fifth-biggest coffee exporter to the US with 5 percent market share after Brazil (21 percent), Colombia (17 percent), Vietnam (8.4 percent) and Canada (8.7 percent).
“We always strive to raise Indonesian coffee’s image in the US through storytelling. In every meeting with partners in Washington DC, we always give away Indonesian coffee as souvenirs as a form of our coffee diplomacy,” Reza said.
Ngopi Sore was a part of a string of events promoting Indonesian premium coffee in the US, followed by the Global Specialty Coffee Expo (GSCE) that is being held in Seattle from April 20-22. Indonesia’s participation is a result of a collaboration between the Indonesian Embassy in Washington DC, the San Francisco consulate general and the Indonesian Trade Promotion Centers in Chicago and Los Angeles.
The exhibition will be attended by the governor of Aceh, three cooperatives from Aceh province, members of the Indonesia Coffee Export and Industry Association (AEKI) and the Specialty Coffee Association of Indonesia (SCAI).
Aside from the supporting activities of the 2018 GSCE exhibition, there will also be an Indonesia - America Business Forum event held in partnership with the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce to develop collaboration opportunities and investment between Aceh province and the state of Washington in agriculture, energy, tourism and infrastructure. (asw)