September 20, 2022 | By Joyce DiMascio

It’s been a long wait, but after three years of postponements and cancellation due to COVID-19, the Melbourne International Coffee Expo 2022 (MICE) is about to return.

The expo will be held September 27 – 30, 2022 for trade. It will also open to the public on the final two days.

MICE is also presenting Melbourne Coffee Week to run alongside the expo, from September 24 to October 1.

And for those who fancy themselves as baristas a cut above the rest, the 2022 World Barista Championships (WBC) and World Brewers Cup (WBrC) will also run. These are seen as the “Olympics of Coffee” and regarded highly in the coffee and barista scene around the world.

Sixty national barista champions from across the globe will compete for the world barista crown.

Two hundred exhibitors and 14,500 participants are expected to pass through the doors of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) for these events.

According to Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB), event devotees are baristas keen to explore coffee trends and international roasters, manufacturers and traders who want showcase their products and brands.

Apart from the United States, Australia is the only country to host the WBC more than once.

Significant economic impact

MCB chief executive Julia Swanson says Melbourne is a renowned coffee destination making it the ideal city to host these events.

“There will be countless opportunities for coffee lovers to try new blends, grab a brew from some of the best roasters in the country and from around the globe, test a wide range of coffee equipment and find the best suppliers that suit their coffee palate.

“Being able to discover where your coffee comes from [and] meet the farmers that grow popular varietals at Roasters Alley will be a real highlight, along with experiencing the craft of filter coffee, manual coffee brewing and service excellence,” she said.

The international coffee competitions are produced annually by World Coffee Events, a subsidiary of the Specialty Coffee Association. Both competitions involve thrilling, time-restricted performances by the baristas on stage in front of judges and an audience.

MICE 2022 and the two international coffee events, WBC and WBrC, are expected to inject more than $15.5 million into the Victorian economy.

Among the exhibitors are Satake, the company that developed the first two-colour sorting machine for green coffee beans, Opem, specialists in packaging for coffee, AFSystems and Flavourtech, which specialises in aroma recovery, extraction and evaporation.