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Character Story of the Development of Coffee History: boutique Coffee Godmother-Erna Nusen (Erna Knutsen)

Published: 2024-04-16 Author:
Last Updated: 2024/04/16, In fact, when something or an area is stagnant, it will always make the gear work again or even jump out of the current bottleneck completely because of the appearance of an important person. They push different nodes at different events and at different times, and without them, these "gears" might have been until now.

In fact, when something or an area is stagnant, it will always make the gear work again or even jump out of the current bottleneck completely because of the appearance of an important person. They push different nodes at different events at different times, and without them, these "gears" may not be able to get back on track until now.

In the coffee circle, there are also such phenomenal figures, such as Angelo Moriando, the inventor of Espresso espresso machines, or Mrs. Merita, who makes drip coffee cleaner, and Erna Knusen, the protagonist of today's article in Qianjie.

What is boutique coffee?

Many people think that boutique coffee is a technical term in an industry, which refers to the name of a certain type of coffee. In fact, "boutique coffee" belongs to a concept, translated from Specialty Coffee.

In 1974, Ms. Erna Knutsen put forward the concept of "boutique coffee" for the first time in the monthly magazine Tea & Coffee Trade Journal: Special geographic microclimates produce beans with unique flavor profiles. Coffee beans with unique flavor are produced under special geographical conditions and microclimate.

Strictly speaking, there was no clear definition of fine coffee at that time, and it was not until 2009 that the American Fine Coffee Association (SCAA) formulated a more scientific objective condition for raw coffee beans, that is, the cup test score under the SCAA standard should not be less than 80 points, and then gave a quantifiable attribute definition of boutique coffee. It can be said that every delicious cup of coffee we enjoy today is due to the efforts of this lady, and she mentioned this theory because of her deep love for coffee.

Erna Knudsen, who is he?

Ms. Erna Knutsen was born in 1922 in the Arctic Circle in Norway. At the age of five, her family moved to New York, USA. Whenever her mother grinds coffee beans at home, she is deeply attracted by the attractive aroma of coffee, which makes her remember fresh coffee deeply when she is young. However, when she was young, she did not get involved in the coffee industry first, but chose other industries to make a living.

Erna Knutsen (1921-2018).

It was not until 1968, when she was in her early 40s, that she joined a coffee trading company called B.C. Ireland, which served as both secretary and buyer, and officially entered the field of coffee. Unfortunately, it was in the 1960s and 1970s, when the United States was not as free and equal as it is today. Discrimination (race, gender) is common in various industries, and the coffee industry is no exception. It is generally agreed that this is not a matter for women, and Erna is also restricted from entering the cup room and observing the baking process of the samples. As a result, she didn't get a chance to show her strength when she stepped into the coffee circle in the early days.

She became famous in the first World War.

Until one day, by chance, she tasted Manning, who was first introduced to the United States. She was so shocked by Manning's unique flavor that she made up her mind with a big wave of her hand and bought a whole container of raw beans and sold them all in more than a month. It is precisely because of the high accuracy of the cup test report, which not only won the praise of the customers, made her popular in the industry, but also successfully broke through the bottleneck of her career, no longer have to be discriminated against and have no place to show her ability.

Not only does Ms. Knudsen have an extraordinary sense of smell and taste, but her taste spectrum memory is even more amazing. In order to introduce better Arabica coffee to more consumers, she began to systematically learn the coffee cup test to improve her professional ability. At that time, she began to have a strong interest in all kinds of imported coffee from different places, constantly exploring and studying, but soon she discovered the disadvantages.

She noticed that no matter which region or supplier they supplied, the quality of the beans they supplied was not stable. The last batch of coffee tasted very good, but the next batch changed to the opposite flavor. Then after tracing back to the source, we learned that the source of the problem lies in the trading price of coffee beans.

The birth of boutique coffee

At that time, if you wanted to buy coffee beans in the hands of farmers, you had to go through layers of middlemen with "twists and turns". In order to make enough of the price difference, the intermediary Chamber of Commerce continues to squeeze the purchase price of coffee fruit. Coffee beans grown by farmers can only be bought at a very low price, and when their income is not proportional to their efforts, they have to pay more if they want to maintain their basic income. So in this background, the harvest of coffee fruit by farmers is no longer limited to red ripe fruit, as long as it grows in the harvest season, no matter it is good or bad, it will be harvested together! Anyway, "donkey and horse", "big and small, thin and fat", "old, weak, sick and disabled" all have the same price, so "Why should I pursue quality?"

So, in order to address the root causes of the problem, Ms. Ernusen published the concept of "boutique coffee" in the 1974 monthly magazine. And in the years after its release, he devoted himself to the spread of the concept, sharing to let others know what a cup of coffee is like from seed to cup. Her enthusiasm for coffee has won her a lot of honors, but also because coffee has visited various producing areas and made friends with growers from different countries, places of origin and estates. In this way, she also gained a high position in the coffee market.

In 1982, as one of the organizers, she founded the Fine Coffee Association of America. Because of the small number at the beginning, she also served as an initial member and served on the board twice. She was not only a director of the Pacific Coast Coffee Association, but also the only woman invited to attend the International Coffee Seminar.

In 1985, Ms. Knudsen officially founded her own coffee trading company, Knutsen coffee, Ltd, specializing in the acquisition of global high-quality raw beans, spanning dozens of countries and producing areas. By 1988, at the age of 65, she had had a good harvest of fame and fortune. In the years that followed, she won many awards one after another:

In 1991, she won the first Outstanding contribution Award of the Coffee Industry issued by SCAA; in 1994, she won the Women of the year Award in Tea and Coffee Magazine; in 1999, SCAA awarded her the Best International Fine Coffee Promotion Award; in 2002, she won the first Lifetime Achievement Award issued by SCAA.

In 2014, Ms. Knudsen was honored at the SCAA opening ceremony when she was awarded the title of founder of the boutique coffee industry again by SCAA, the year she announced her retirement at the age of 93.

It can be seen that her promotion of boutique coffee, like other great men in the industry, is a great practice. At the end of the article, Qianjie also ended with a quote from Ms. Knudsen in an interview:

"coffee gives me the wonder life"

Coffee, let us have no regrets in this life.


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