|▲ Korea Coffee Academy / Director Jiyoung Ahn|
According to a report last year, Koreans drink 353 cups of coffee a year per person. It is 3 times higher than the average consumption of yearly coffee of the global population which is 132 cups per person. South Korea is the 6th largest to consume coffee beans, about 15 tons a year, a 2.2% of the global consumption. All these figures tell us one thing: South Korea is in the coffee fever. Coffee houses are competitively lined up every other building on the street and many of them are experiencing bitter taste of closure. This is because they tend to focus on quantity while ignoring quality and professionalism.
Jiyoung Ahn, Director of the Korea Coffee Academy, asked me when we meet for an interview “Do you know about coffee?” I wondered for a while and said “I just enjoy coffee.” She said “Then you know about coffee. Enjoying coffee is same as knowing coffee. Memorizing the origin of coffee or characteristics of coffee does not mean one knows about coffee very well if he or she does not enjoy it.”
The point of this toss of words is closely related to the need for qualitative growth of the Korean coffee industry over quantitative expansion of the business; she emphasizes that it is encouraging more people are becoming sensitive about the taste of coffee nowadays than the amount in the past.
The Korea Coffee Academy offers everything that is needed for making coffee and learning the business. Many of the students at the academy are from novice coffee makers to experience or already coffee business owners. The most popular course is the barista certificate course followed by the startup course because without a bartista certificate one must struggle to get a job in the industry.
“I’m currently running an offline distribution brand ‘Coffee Hyunjang’. The idea is to offer realistic coffee test to coffee lovers and enjoy quality coffee at a good price. All coffees made here are handmade and all the processes are for the visitors to experience.”
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