The second Rwanda Cup of Excellence competition brought 26 international cuppers to the small town of Rwamagana to judge the final phase of the world’s most stringent coffee competition. Cupping at the new Kayonza quality lab, the international jury, hailing from 14 countries, scored 22 lots high enough to win the prestigious Cup of Excellence award and the opportunity to be sold to the highest bidder during the online auction October 12th, 2010.
The audience at the packed awards ceremony at the culmination of the week was a sea of Rwanda coffee T-shirts as farmers, dignitaries, industry partners and the national and international judges all wore similar attire showcasing the partnership for quality that was apparent at this year’s event.
“The support that the program enjoyed from the Rwanda Starbucks office, the Technoserve program and the Texas A&M SPREAD project was vital to the success of this year’s competition,” indicated Susie Spindler, Executive Director of the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, “In fact,” she continued, “the first two critical weeks of the competition were held at the Starbucks lab in Kigali where the Rwanda national jury cupped through all of the coffees entering the competition and selected only the best to send to the international jury. It is this kind of industry backing that has catapulted Rwanda to the fore-front of quality coffee sector”.
The top two places of the 2010 competition received over 90 points and were less than .05 apart in score. The first place lot is from COOPAC Mushonyi and comes from Rutsiro in the Western district while the second is from Dukundekawa Musasa Nyanza/ RWASHOSCCO and comes from Gakenke in the Northern district.
In-depth farm information for all of the 22 winners will be posted before the auction and available to members of the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, Inc. Samples of the winning coffees will be sent worldwide to registered companies. The auction will also be online and can be viewed by the public.
In addition to Rwanda, the Cup of Excellence program is hosted in Brazil, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Costa Rica, Bolivia and Colombia. The Cup of Excellence program is owned and managed by the non-profit Alliance for Coffee Excellence, Inc. The state of the art Cup of Excellence auction is conducted in partnership with CommoditiesOne, a leading software development firm in Sydney, Australia. For more information about the Cup of Excellence program, to become a member log on to www.cupofexcellence.org