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By Edgar Martins*
We are in the information age, we can learn and be whatever we want, its just a matter of will. Even certifications that enable professionals to perform their duties, are within reach of all, right?
Wrong. Today I work in one of the fastest growing sectors in the world, and everyone wants to work with coffee and quality service. But from what I've seen, the baristas' level of preparation is below criticism.
Why do we hire non-certified Baristas?
I don´t know. Like every profession, the barista also needs certification to carry on his work. You need basic knowledge to operate a coffee machine the right way, and to work in a bar the right way.
Of course we have ill-trained professionals in all segments, but when it comes to quality, we should not give up training.
The biggest loser in this game of "nobody needs to know, to do" is the dedicated professional. In reality, the coffee sector in Brazil is so new and already with inversion of values. We will then think together: a good barista, needS to know machine drinks (barista course) extraction methods (brewing course) and of course to coffee tastiing (sensory analysis course) ... To be a professional beginner, very basic but with the minimum knowledge, the investment required is around three thousand reais and four days of course.
But why should I take a course, if I can sell and earn without makng it? Some baristas might ask me. I respond easily with an example: will the consumer know that the coffee bag that he is buying for a much higher price, has the correct score, how will you know if the the filtered coffee of almost $ 20 that he is dring is really of a coffee of origin, what were all the processes necessary to reach the level of special coffee? How will you know if the extraction of this coffee is correct, within the ideal standards? Who will be the barista who will give all these answers?
If the customer did not like it, or did not understand the proposal, he will leave unsatisfied and conclude that he does not like specialTY coffees. It's one less customer for the industry.
Quality is not done informally. I had to study a lot, take many courses, invest a lot of time and money to know what I know, to learn what I learned, to deliver the work I deliver. Luckily those who know me consumes my work with ease, with the certainty that it is done with base and respect. But who has not had the necessary training?
So I have just created a NECESSITY.
That's right, the necessity to have a certification, a document, a control, a proof that the coffee shop actually works with specialty coffee, which guarantees the customer an incredible experience.
And the question I would like to hear from the clients is: Who said it´s special?
* Edgar Martins - Dga, is an AST barista instructor for the SCA Educational Program, Aeropress Champion in 2015 and currently manager at Lucca in Curitiba
An approach to training and the necessity for baristas with coffee knowledge in coffee shops, brought by Edgar Martins.