Art on coffee dust, talks on roasting beans at global expo

Art on coffee dust, talks on roasting beans at global expo

Amid the bustle of traders and connoisseurs checking out the brands and the subtle techniques of roasting the coffee bean, one stall had a set of unique artworks on display.

True to the theme that dominated the International Coffee Expo, the framed pictures portraying styles ranging from Warli, Madhubani, Tanjore to temple designs had that deep suntan colour.

"They're made of coffee residue - be it leftover coffee powder, decoction or coffee beans," offered Hema, who manned the stall.

A city-based corporate executive, Hema turned to making art with a unique medium to ease the stress that is all too common in her position. "I'm able to take my mind off work when creating these artworks," she said.

Collecting the medium for her artistic endeavour is not only less stressful, but also easy in a coffee-drinking city. Hema places small baskets in her apartment and asks her neighbours to fill them with coffee residue. "The reward for them will be my artwork for a reasonable price," she added.

Hema's was not the only unique stall at the three-day expo, dominated by retail coffee brands and makers of coffee-grinding machines.

Hyderabad-based startup retailer Krishna Chaithanya said his brand procured coffee beans from Araku in Visakhapatnam, where 100 tribal farmers grew them at their tiny one or two-acre coffee farms.

"We'll be investing 10% of our profit on the farmers," Chaithanya said. "We'll be training them in roasting beans, which is currently not available in Andhra Pradesh."

Coffee entrepreneurs from across the globe gathered at the expo, in its seventh avatar, discussed ways of streamlining the supply chain from the estate to the filters at the consumers' kitchen by using the latest technological innovation. The event also discussed ways of taking the coffee-drinking culture beyond south India.

"Our focus is on newer technology and skill-building workshops, which can take our farmers to the next level," India Coffee Trust president Anil Kumar Bhandari said, adding that coffee makers need technology to refine the ways of roasting and tasting the drink to make it unique and appealing.

The conference taking place along with the exhibition, which would end on Friday, heard a range of entrepreneurs and experts in the coffee business.

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