This was revealed at the Indonesia Coffee Day event held by the Indonesian Embassy in London in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and the central bank Bank Indonesia at the East Wing Somerset House, a 200-year-old neoclassical building in the heart of London, Minister Councilor of the Indonesian Embassy Thomas Siregar informed Antara London on Sunday.
A total of 10 coffee industry players from Indonesia, including millennial baristas, were involved as part of Indonesia`s economic diplomacy to increase the presence of Indonesian specialty coffee in the United Kingdom, both from the commodity side and the creative sector.
Indonesian Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, and the International Maritime Organization, Rizal Sukma highlighted the enormous potential of trade transactions in the coffee sector between Indonesia and Britain.
"As the fourth-largest coffee producer, it is expected that the first exhibition of Indonesian coffee in the United Kingdom would boost Indonesian coffee exports to the UK," he affirmed.
Present at the business forum were coffee owners and entrepreneurs from Pagalaram, Gayo Mandiri, Malabar, Bali Arabica, Dialog Coffee, Coffee Sarongge, Work Coffee, Ngopi Yuk and Petimera who brought a variety of coffee from Aceh, Bali, West Java, West Java, Sumatra, and Flores.
During the Indonesia Coffee Day, all coffee varieties were presented in a cupping coffee session hosted by Syafrudin from the Specialty Coffee Association Indonesia.
On a separate occasion, Ambassador Sukma stated that with a shift from the culture of tea consumption to drinking coffee in the United Kingdom, Indonesia is in a strategic position to penetrate the coffee market, especially its specialty coffee. Although the potential of Indonesian coffee in the UK is not optimal, the potential for Indonesian coffee is quite large.
"This is what makes the promotion of Indonesian coffee through Indonesia Coffee Day one of KBRI London`s economic diplomacy priorities," the ambassador stated.
He also encouraged various parties to contribute to the development of the Indonesian coffee industry, as did BI and Bank Mandiri, which had partnered with several Indonesian coffee farmers.
Meanwhile, BI`s London Chief of Representative Donny Hutabarat said that BI`s presence at Indonesia Coffee Day, held for the first time, aimed to provide opportunities for two farmers and coffee artisans assisted by BI from West Java and Bali to directly introduce their coffee products to British people, as one of the largest coffee export markets in Europe.
The exhibition is expected to increase and motivate the coffee export market for Indonesian farmers, he stated.
Komang Sukarsana from Kintamani Coffee, who received coaching from BI acknowledged that Indonesia Coffee Day had managed to draw the interest of some buyers, and some were even keen to visit Bali.
"The event was amazing. We were highly enthusiastic and grateful that small farmers could attend this cool event owing to the extraordinary support from Bank Indonesia," he remarked.
Director of Gayo Mandiri Coffee Mohd Amin noted that so far, there were indeed several importers in London who had bought coffee from Indonesia, including Gayo Aceh coffee, but they still bought it from other European importers.
It is expected that through the business meeting held by the Indonesian Embassy, several entrepreneurs and cafe owners in London would prefer to buy coffee directly from Indonesian exporters.
"Thank God, there are some buyers, who are interested in buying coffee directly from us," he noted.
According to Amin, Indonesian coffee, especially Gayo coffee, had since long been viewed by buyers from the United States and Europe as a "blending" material to serve as flavoring for the coffee purchased from other countries.
The event of Indonesia Coffee Day was attended by some 30 businessmen and owners of coffee shops in London, including Indonesian coffee importers to the UK Tessa and Christian Dennis, planning to import coffee from Indonesia and have collaborated with Malabar Coffee Manager Tiara Dwi Rahayu.