I simply can’t believe that the two weeks is finally coming to a close. The time flew by so fast, yet I feel like I’ve been here forever. I came into this program with the main goal of obviously learning about coffee and bananas and pineapple, however I also wanted to make new friends and memories. I can gladly say that I have done all of the above and more. I can’t thank the supervisors, Edgar, and especially, Pav got all of this. Anyways, let’s get into the fun stuff: supply chains!!
Farming is the first step in the coffee making process. While it is quite complex and an incredibly long process, I can summarize. Before farmers can put the coffee bean in the ground and wait for it to grow, they must plan what to do in order to succeed as coffee farmers. They have to look at weather patterns, see how much harvest to grow, calculate the amount of workers to hire, etc. after they have done all of this, they can begin the making process. First, farmers pick the cherries off of the coffee plant for them to be processed. Next, they are separated, washed, and dried using the equipment specific to the plantation.
The next step in the coffee process is processing mills and exporters. After the coffee has been picked, washed, and dried, it is able to be packaged for exportation. An example of this is when Doka processes the coffee that they have picked from their own plantation to soon package up and send over to their buyers such as Café Britt to be processed.
The third step is where places like Café Britt come into play. Roasting companies like Britt buy the beans from processing mills to roast it themselves as their own brand. The step of the supply chain that is involved in this part is service. After the roasting company roasts the coffee, they must do quality control and branding. Quality control is when professions come in, sit in a room alone for hours on end, trying all the different coffees that the roasting company has to offer. This ensures that only the best of the best coffee will be sold under the roasting company’s name. Next, the company must brand and market themselves to the public. Café Britt is a great example of marketing. They place themselves in predominately tourist locations such as hotels and airports. Then, they market towards the tourists as a local Costa Rican favorite in order to make the customers feel as though they are getting authentic and well loved Costa Rican coffee.
This brings us into our last step: customers. Anyone who walks into a Britt shop or quite frankly any coffee, souvenir, or bakery in the San José airport, is a customer to Café Britt. Customers are the controllers of all businesses. They determine whether or not a business will continue to make a specific product, create new products, or even get rid of already made products that aren’t doing too well in the market. These roasting companies are constantly having to adapt and evolve based solely off of customer preference. This sometimes means that they have to market in different ways depending on the location they are in. For example, if Café Britt opens a new shop in Monteverde, they may design their packages with mountains and beautiful landscapes. If they have a shop in an airport, they may design their packaging with popular Costa Rican animals or nature. Overall, everything that not only coffee roasters, but any business, does is because of the consumer.
I want to end this by saying another thank you to all of the people that made this trip possible. Pura Vida!!!🇨🇷🌸🌞