Philippine coffee is on the world stage once again!
Michael Harris Conlin, President and CEO of Henry & Sons made history when he won silver in the Signature Coffee Latte category and bronze in the Signature Coffee Brewer category at the Global Coffee Championship in Korea, besting over 30 other competitors in each category.
Conlin, a former Philippine National Barista Champion and a Semi Finalist in the World Barista Championship, used Liberica (aka barako) beans from Laguna and Arabica beans from Benguet respectively in this year’s winning entries.
“Most barista competitions put focus on the Barista. It’s rare that the barista takes the back seat, and the coffee gets a chance to take the main stage to compete in a global coffee competition,” he wrote in an Instagram post.
The win is particularly significant as it’s the first time a barista has won using Liberica beans, which is usually associated with the province of Batangas in the Philippines.
“I think this win… put a lot of attention on Liberica. I’m getting messages from all around the world,” Conlin says. “I think more and more baristas are going to want to use Liberica.”
Conlin hopes that the wins will put a spotlight on Philippine coffee. “The more professional baristas use our Philippine coffee in the world stages, the more attention we’ll get, and the more these coffee farmers can command for their coffee.”
This article appeared in Agriculture Magazine’s December 2022 issue.