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Guild for Coffee Roasting Professionals Announces Apprenticeship Program
Press release from Specialty Coffee Association of America, Date: July 2, 2003
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LONG BEACH, CA — The Roasters Guild announces the coffee industry's first accreditation program for coffee roasters.  A core principle of The Roasters Guild is to provide educational opportunities to coffee roasters, and present the craft and science of coffee roasting as a professional occupation.
The educational component of the program provides training and instruction on a broad range of coffee related topics.  The accreditation component is a formal qualification program that recognizes coffee knowledge, industry-wide expertise, and confers credentials at the completion and mastery of the educational curriculum.
"We received a clear mandate from our membership that an individual accreditation program was what The Roasters Guild should focus on," says Mike Ebert, Chairman, The Roasters Guild Executive Council. "We have identified a dynamic team of coffee professional to design a complete program, build alliances with industry experts, and create an infrastructure within The Roasters Guild to implement this program."
"The Roasters Guild has a responsibility to both educate novice coffee roasters, and continue the training of the experts in our field," adds Spencer Turer, Accreditation Board Chairman.  "We have designed a very comprehensive curriculum, including practical training and educational classes that will bring value to coffee roasters of every size and in every segment of the industry."
The educational program will coordinate the collaborative efforts of The Roasters Guild and The Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) and present a curriculum for coffee roasting, product testing, manufacturing, farming and processing, and other coffee related topics.  These educational lessons will be presented at Roasters Guild events and at SCAA conferences in the form of seminars, lectures, workshops, and also self-directed home study. The course syllabus will be presented in graduating levels of challenge with a logical progression of basic classes as prerequisites for advanced topics.
The accreditation component is a multilevel program consisting of formal testing and qualification designations.  Candidates actively pursuing an accreditation level will follow a specific course of study and evaluation, while accredited roasters will be required to continue their educational and professional development to maintain their qualification level.
The Apprentice Roaster level is for individuals in the investigation phase of their career. The Journeyman Roaster accreditation is for individuals who are employed to roast coffee, and have completed the training required to perform their job requirements.  Classes at this level are designed to be more challenging and of a higher educational level then the Apprentice. The Master Roaster accreditation is for experienced, highly skilled coffee roasters who are regarded as experts by their peers.  This Master Roaster accreditation level is designed to be particularly complex and multifaceted, and requires substantial individual learning related to coffee, manufacturing, and business topics.
"Our goal is to elevate the status of coffee roasters from skilled laborers to skilled professionals; our desire is that the Master Roaster designation enjoy the same recognition and honor that Master Chefs and Masters Sommeliers receive," says Spencer Turer.


About The Roasters Guild and SCAA  
Originally conceived in 1998 by top industry professional, The Roasters Guild was formally chartered in 2001 and began membership registration in 2002.  Currently The Roasters Guild has over 200 members worldwide, and includes coffee roasters from all aspects of the coffee business: farmers, exporters, importers, commercial roasters, and retailers.  The Roasters Guild is a Specialty Coffee Association of America Trade Guild. Visit The Roasters Guild at www.roastersguild.org .

About the SCAA

Founded in 1982, SCAA is the world’s largest coffee trade association with over 2,500 member companies. SCAA members are located in over 40 countries and represent every segment of the specialty coffee industry, from coffee growers to coffee roasters and retailers. The SCAA’s mission is to be the recognized authority on specialty coffee, providing a common forum for the development and promotion of coffee excellence and sustainability. The SCAA’s dedication to excellence in coffee is realized through the setting of quality standards for the industry; conducting research on coffee, equipment and perfection of craft; and providing education, training, resources and services for members. The SCAA’s annual conference is held in a different U.S. city each year and is the coffee industry’s largest gathering and exhibition.

Contact: Mike Ferguson/ Aaron Kiel
Phone: (562) 624-4100 / (562)-983-8113
E-mail: mferguson@scaa.org / akiel@akprgroup.com

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