South Africa has a shortage of good Baristas. That’s why The Daily Buzz, which operates 12 coffee bars in corporate locations across Gauteng and an in-house coffee roastery, Craft Coffee, has launched the first South African developed and fully SETA accredited Barista training academy in Newtown, Johannesburg.
The bold initiative
Craft Coffee, one of the premier artisan roasteries in South Africa, is headed by 2013 South African and All Africa Barista champion, Lovejoy Chirambasukwa, and has been an integral part of the unique blend that has made The Daily Buzz a huge success. Now, according to CEO, Andrew Brown, it will share another secret ingredient with the broader coffee community and help solve a critical problem – a shortage of Baristas.
A strong, rich taste
“South Africa’s biggest problem is unemployment. Yet, every new coffee bar needs at least five new Baristas! We want to improve the quality of baristas’ skills, employ more people and improve their earning ability,” Brown says. He notes that The Daily Buzz Baristas have been the key to its success with technical expertise and customer engagement being paramount.
“Taking pride in the smallest detail, such as knowing repeat customers by name, has been a key differentiator for our business. We have proved the value of extensive investment in staff training and educate our staff as meticulously as we choose our coffee. There is very little they don’t know about great coffee and excellent service,” Brown explains.
The bitter-sweet aromas
Already eight new students are on their way to obtaining an NQF3 skills programme. The course was developed by the Craft Coffee team with the help of the SETA recognised specialists at THRIVE. After formal lectures in the classroom, trainee Baristas complete workplace assignments and present their ‘portfolios of evidence’ to the coffee gurus.
The learner guide and workbook, with which they are supplied, provide a broad range of content that shows them how to clean and adjust a grinder so that it turns out the perfect espresso as well as teaches them the ins and out of stock taking, storing coffee, hygiene, quality standards, service and customer interaction.
Best of two blends
“We ensure that there is a technical or theory side and a practical side. They get to learn about tasting – the various flavours, the different coffees and blends and the related aromas. They will be fully equipped to work as a Barista once they graduate. This will be a good stepping stone into the world of coffee,” says Chirambasukwa.
The participants are ultimately assessed in house and receive their official results from SETA. Chirambasukwa underlines the need for trained Baristas locally as well as internationally, adding that big centres, such as Dubai, are also on the lookout for accredited Baristas, providing local young trainees with exciting career opportunities.