I love fair trades, you might know that. Fair trades are place where people, inspired by the same business or even passion, meet and greet, talk and share experiences.
Last week I was in Hamburg and attended the INTERNORGA, one of the most important fair trades the HORECA and food-industries are keen on. In know the INTERNORGA for years now and every time I attend it I’m astonished about enterprises making high outlays to permanently win new customers. It is not only the stands on the fair trade becoming bigger and more sophisticated rather the effort enterprises invest in the search for new solutions and better services. It is obvious that their customers demands rises and rises because the consumer’s demands rises much faster.
Is this good or bad? Of course it is not bad for the business evolution because rising demands cause development, especially technical development we all gain from. I’m not intended to write details about the technical part here, I’m just thinking about the whole chain effected by rising demands and the output.
But first things first. Let me tell you something about a new trend I detected, because that’s one of my main purposes to attend a fair trade.
The OCS sector (office coffee service)- is a very high valuable market and therefore a key target of many enterprises which results in a very competitive battle filed.
Due to this enterprises are forced to offer new solutions and systems in shrinking time periods and therefore one could assume that big innovations become rarely.
Not so this year. The industry developed “Hybrid” coffee machines, I’m not talking about cars, no it is about coffee machines. These machines combine fully automated coffee machines and manually processed machines. How does it work? We are talking about high level machines, equipped with high tech you never would think a coffee machine needs this. But the developers and engineers made a good job. The customers are able to receive a coffee, processed automatically but nearly tasting like a coffee prepared by an experienced barista.
If you see these hybrid machines and taste the coffee they produce you can imagine that their development was a time consuming and very expensive task. Enterprises would not spend so much money and effort if they would not be sure to hit the market’s demand.
For me this is a further indicator that our society is already spoiled. If one is forced, in order to meet customer demands, to invest so much money just for a little enhancement of taste… that is curious.
Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not fighting development nor I’m against making things better or more convenient, no I support this!
It’s my attitude to look behind the scenes and the impacts. These new hybrid machines have no negative impact to anyone, why should they. The only thing that immediately came into my mind was that people are willed to spend so much money for a little bit more taste, and we’re talking about a coffee you drink at work- not with your darling after a great dinner. Is this a bad fact? No it is not, people in Europe, especially in Germany are well off, that’s OK. The downside is that at the moment the investment for a coffee machine is very high but the price per cup shall not rise to much you’ve got to make other savings.
And now we’re at the point the hard facts come into the game. The savings are made at the raw material which is coffee. Believe me it is not the traders who have to deal with a loss. It is the weakest part of the chain- the coffee farmers. They have to face mighty trading companies, climate change and it’s impacts. But we, on the sunny side, don’t care because we get what we want.
It is not my job and intention to ruin a good mood, I just want to sensitise. It’s also not my job to criticise our system which makes all of us wealthy and well off, I just want everybody to be aware that our benefits very often lead to a loss for others.
If you are a follower of my blog you know my attitude and you know that I’m not a silent spectator rather than an active actor. For those who are new here I recommend to read my article and the discussion (if you are interested in) about this topic:
As said I don’t want to ruin good mood. I also enjoyed to see wonderful things creative people are able to produce. This makes me confident that there are a lot of guys doing their jobs with passion. I support such guys, I also support profit making guys because only profit gives us the ability to help. If you want to share you must have something to share!
Furthermore I was luckily surprise by a new type of coffee to go cups. They are made by gras! Yes it is gras. I hope this enterprise will be able to make a break trough because the amount of disposable stuff is irresistibly rising. They’ve explained the way of production in detail and provide a very good ecological balance. Concerning our environment this invention may set a milestone.
I’m not only addicted to coffee and all the things around this, I also love craftsmanship combined with artisan and passion. If you are an enthusiast of these things than this fair trade is paradise.
Let’s praise our prosperity but let’s treat it as a present and let’s handle it in a responsible way.
Here are some highlight pictures I took during the INTERNORGA. I really was impressed by arts, decoration and sophisticated ways of preparation and presentation.