Barista Magazine

AUG-SEP 2018

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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Page 114 of 123

Emilio Lopez Diaz BALANCING TRADITION WITH INNOVATION By Kenneth R. Olson MASTER EMILIO LOPEZ DIAZ HAS SPENT his life virtually immersed in coffee: He has worked through almost every step in the seed-to-cup chain, from planting, growing, processing, and exporting, right down to selling roasted coffee nearly door to door when he first started. As a sixth-generation coffee farmer, Emilio's work over the last two decades in continuing his family's coffee legacy has helped them weather the difficult and changing landscape of coffee production that forced many others out of the industry. In the midst of implementing his long- term, cutting-edge approach to the way coffee is produced—not just in his home country of El Salvador, but throughout the coffee-producing world—and while running numerous business- es, Emilio has also found time to volunteer to support and promote specialty coffee across the globe. Most recently, he has been the inaugural chair of the newly formed Specialty Coffee Asso- ciation's Coffee Roasters Guild. We had a chance to chat with Emilio about his past, present, and future as he was wrapping up his time at the World of Coffee in Amsterdam in June, and before the Coffee Roasters Guild's annual retreat in Stevenson, Wash., this August. 115

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