Monday, February 1, 2021

Lean Introduction Video Available to Producers

Feb. 1, 2021

Thanks to a smart initiative by and invitation from Atlas Coffee Importers, our company offered an introduction to our copyrighted "Lean at Origin" training on-line to a global audience of producers. Most of them were cooperative leaders. The Sept. 16, 2020 webinar was the first in a four-part series Atlas produced, which included seminars on marketing, quality control for sample roasting, and "flavor formation in natural and honey-processing."

Our 50 minute session, titled "The Importance of Efficiency in Coffee Production" is available to view on YouTube: . The video is thanks to the technical team and everyone at Atlas, but especially Drew Billups, Director of Education and Quality Control.

The webinar starts with emphasizing that the purpose of adopting a "Lean" culture for coffee processing is primarily to allow us to pay farmers more. It is our strong belief at Artisan Coffee Imports that by 2025, Lean concepts will transform the coffee supply chain. We started teaching Lean in 2015 and predicted back then that within 10 years lean principles at origin will transform the coffee supply chain, just as it has become the "bread and butter" of other global supply chains like automotive and aerospace.

Why is this operations management practice so compelling? Because it embraces what we all know as leaders makes organizations stronger: worker empowerment, growth and innovation, data-driven decision-making and teamwork. These are only a few of the many key principles that allow companies with a "Lean" culture to outperform their competitors. Toyota Motor Co. headquartered in Japan, is known as the world's best expert in "Lean". Not coincidentally, they are also the most profitable automaker on the planet.

Curious? Learn more by clicking here and listening for a few minutes to how this powerful training can help coffee producers operationalize Lean. We use an example: Kopakama cooperative in Rwanda.

Where has "Lean at Origin" been implemented? We've had the honor to train about seven coffee-producing organizations, both cooperatively and private owned, in three countries: Rwanda, Burundi and D.R. Congo. The training has been most completely adopted at Kopakama, where the efficiency concepts were also brought to the dry mill manager and staff. In D.R. Congo, we were pleased to offer the training as a tool to help the cooperative staff adapt their operations to include not just women and frontline workers, but also people who are amputees and landmine victims. Diversity training was easily added to that customized program.

Ready to learn more? Contact Ruth Ann Church ( today to arrange a FREE introductory 30 minute, interactive webinar for your group.