This month, our subscribers received coffee from a Slovenian roastery, Banibeans. Apart from the fact that all the coffees taste great, we were surprised by the beautiful design of the coffee bags. Namely, female characters adorn every bag of coffee, so in accordance with the International Women's Day in March, we've chosen the coffees from this Slovenian roastery.
Luka Banovič is the main character behind this story. Although very young, this 21-year-old guy, has been roasting coffee for several years. We've decided to interview him and see how the story started.
KK: Please tell us something about your brand and where does the love for specialty coffee come from?
LB: The story of Banibeans started when I was 17 years old. I was shocked by the coffee offer in Slovenia, the culture of coffee drinking and the quality of the coffee itself. I was particularly bothered by the bitterness of the coffee, which was everywhere. I became interested in coffee because it was strange to me that people were not bothered by this unpleasant bitterness and the resulting unpleasant aftertaste. After a few months of research into the preparation, roasting and the kava plant itself, I came up with the idea that I wanted to offer Slovenians an experience through coffee. I wanted to set up an online shop where each coffee would be completely unique and all coffees would be light roasted.
KK: It is interesting that you are so young, and you already have a lot of experience in this industry. How do you balance business and college commitments?
LB: Balancing two commitments is easier if you enjoy doing both. Somehow I have divided my year into several smaller periods in which I focus more on one or the other. During exams and university commitments, I spend most of the day studying, and coffee is just a relaxation at the end of studying, and vice versa. Somehow the two commitments combine and complement each other nicely. I think I've got so used to the balancing act that I'm more productive that way.
KK: How do you choose coffee when buying green coffee?
LB: I mostly just rely on my own taste when it comes to choosing green coffee beans. Occasionally, I involve my customers in the selection process, who I invite for cupping, or maybe friends who are also as crazy about coffee as I am. I love fruity coffees with high acidty, but also enjoy in sweet and balance cup of coffee. I have one main supplier from whom I buy about 50% of all my green coffee, but I still like to order from several suppliers at the same time, because that way you get to know more and more people and expand your knowledge.
KK: Your coffee packages design is very beautiful and interesting. How come only women decorate these bags?
LB: From the beginning i was not sure what kind of design i want, because I wanted the bags to be unique and memorable. One day my girlfriend was drawing a girl from Africa for fun and we both realised that we could incorporate illustrations of women into the design of the bags because they are unique. At the same time, it is worth mentioning that women mostly overlook the process from coffee beans to cup. Most of the time, farms are named after the last name of the man in the family, but women are key to the product itself. They take care of the picking, sorting, processing of the coffee cherries.... on which the final product depends very much.
KK: Thank you Luka for a nice interview. People, enjoy these top arabica coffees, and you women - happy international women's day!