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Masterful Coffee: A Conversation With Moccamaster USA


(Image courtesy of Moccamaster USA.)


Sociologist Malcolm Gladwell popularized the 10,000-hour rule. Gladwell describes the rule as "the key to achieving true expertise in any skill is simply a matter of practicing, albeit correctly, for at least 10 000 hours" (Wong, 2015). Very few companies can accurately say they spent enough time to "master" the product or service they produce. The only organization on the top of my mind that adheres to this rule is Technivorm Moccamaster. For over 50 years, Moccamaster has continued to produce high-end drip coffee brewers. I had the chance to speak with Mariah Mattoon, Director of Marketing at Moccamaster USA, to learn more about the company.



(Image courtesy of Moccamaster USA. The image depicts Mariah Mattoon.)




1. What makes Moccamaster USA different from other companies?

Moccamaster is a Dutch legacy brand. Our founder Gerard Smit founded Technivorm (the manufacturer of Moccamaster) in 1964 and four years later created the first Moccamaster. Our product's design has mostly stayed the same since our first models. Moccamaster keeps its product line small to focus on what we do best. We are well known in Europe, especially in the Nordic countries, but we are a rapidly growing brand in the American market. We have combined the best elements of a legacy brand and a start-up environment. We are passionate about creating the best coffee brewers and providing excellent customer service at wholesale, DTC (direct to consumer), and e-commerce channels. We like to think of ourselves as the coffee maker your friend in the know knows.


(Image courtesy of Moccamaster USA.)





2. How does Moccamaster honor its past and embrace innovation?

Our founder Gerard Smit had some successful inventions before entering the coffee market. When he decided to shift gears and focus on coffee, he partnered with a large Dutch coffee roaster to make the first coffee grinder in 1964. After this initial creation, he spent three years discovering the science behind what makes the best coffee. Once that was determined, he applied his engineering know-how to develop a coffee brewer that would recreate that scientific equation perfectly and consistently.



(Image courtesy of Moccamaster US's website.)


In 1968, the Norwegian Coffee Association, Smit, and other researchers determined the 4T formula for the perfect cup of at-home coffee. The formula is Temperature (what temperature the coffee brew at) plus Time (how long it takes for the water to go through the coffee), and Turbulence (how much the coffee grounds move around in the water) equates to Total Dissolved Solids (the difference between coffee and coffee bean water). Every model has the exact same brewing technology that produces perfect coffee to these industry standards. While Moccamaster models may have different features such as capacity or carafe style.




(Images courtesy of Moccamaster US's website.)


3. How does Moccamaster incorporate its mission and vision into its product and services?

We love coffee. Our mission is to create high-quality, long-lasting coffee brewers that allow everyone to experience the taste of all the flavors in a cup of coffee. Our vision is that this will be the last coffee brewer you'll ever need to buy.



(Image courtesy of Moccamaster USA.)




4. How does Moccamaster promote sustainability in the coffee brewing sector?

Our machines adhere to Dutch and European environmental standards. When we produce coffee brewers, we create a product with a very long usage life. We don't believe in throwing things away. Instead, we want people to send back their Moccamasters to our repair center. When we package our products, we do not use clamshells or Styrofoam. Instead, we use cardboard for our exterior and interior packaging.



(Images courtesy of Moccamaster US's website.)



5. What is the future of the company?

We want to continue our growth trajectory in the North American market and see the Moccamaster become an instantly recognizable kitchen fixture.



(Image courtesy of Moccamaster USA.)




Footnotes

Wong N. C. (2015). The 10 000-hour rule. Canadian Urological Association journal = Journal de l'Association des urologues du Canada, 9(9-10), 299. https://doi.org/10.5489/cuaj.3267


Me on my first day of graduate school

Rachel Huss

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