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My Coffee Career Progression 4

Updated: Jun 15, 2020

I finally received a sponsorship visa by Caravan two weeks before my student visa expired. My life was on hold before that. I couldn't plan ahead much because I didn't know if I would get the visa. It was like walking through a tunnel but you see no end. A bit similar to the situation we are experiencing now.

After MBA, I have been hanging around Caravan's roastery. "Hanging around" sounds way too nice. I was literally annoying the team all the time just to make sure they know I needed a job! The team was very welcoming, and let me attending their production cuppings twice a week. I also learned that they needed a quality control manager soon. Through my unshakable perseverance, I got a PT roastery assistant position. Still not a guarantee of getting a visa but it was my only shot.

The roastery work is not as glamorous as you think. Unless you are the head roaster, that you could be creative with the coffee profiling bit. Or the green buyer, that you could travel around the world like a maniac. (Green buyer work really is not as dreamy as you think.)

The rest of the jobs are tough physically and mentally: Packing, green coffee lifting, weighing, moving coffee sacks, fulfilling orders...etc. Same thing over and over again every day. (Might be the fittest period of my entire coffee career.)

You might already notice that I think a lot. By doing repetitive work, I could easily think TOO much, which is not healthy for me. Slowly, I grew to understand that production work really was not for me and I was glad that my visa was granted.

My main role in quality control was:

Ⓐ Cup freshly landed and roasted coffee.

Ⓑ Identify new profile roasts with the head roasters.

Ⓒ Following up production roasts and adjust the profiles based on the cupping performance.

Ⓓ The coffee was evaluated by different brewing techniques.

Keeping quality consistent in big volume is not an easy task. QC might seem like unnecessary work but it is so crucial. I would say it is the representation and reputation of the entire roaster!

I realised I like this type of work: Express myself through tasting coffee.


Cupping at Caravan.

Sample roasting is part of the QC process.

copyright © 2020 Freda Yuan. All rights reserved.

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