How Is Specialty Coffee Graded?

Countries like Colombia, Ethiopia, India, Japan, Kenya, that have the perfect altitude, and the right time of the year for these beans to grow in good soil with care, harvested and sold to coffee traders and roasters at a premium.

Coffea Arabica is a dominant cultivar coffee species with a 60% global production that is graded as specialty coffee.

Because of the attention and care that specialty coffee requires, coffee traders and roasters buy them at a premium directly from the growers.

There is no universal coffee grading system. Each country exports different varieties of beans and can grade them as desired.

However, some aspects of coffee bean grading that are similar no matter where the beans are grown are such as the altitude from their growing region, the region itself, the manner in which they were prepared, and their shape or color, the botanical variety of the plant that produced the beans.

Coffee that has scored over 80 points is referred to as specialty coffee by the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA).

Specialty Coffee- The Q Grade Score Sheet

Score      |     Grade            |       Specialty Yes/No
90-100          Outstanding           Yes
85- 89.99      Excellent                Yes
80- 84.99      Very Good              Yes
Below 80       No Grading            No

read more: What is the water to the coffee ratio?

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Learn about these brewing methods and more in our free coffee brewing course

By: Douglas

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About US | OCM Profile

OCM ( was started in 2007 with the first webpage about coffee machines. And for a number of years, we focused on helping people find their desired coffee machine (we still are helping folks with that! So, if you are looking for coffee machines for office or restaurants - check out the link). 

In 2010, we started getting enquiries on restaurant marketing and we start to help food and beverage brands with their marketing. Below are campaigns and events that we have done over the years: 

OCM's campaigns: F&B Marketing Ideas by OCM 

OCM's Events: F&B Industry events by or with OCM

Check out this restaurant marketing guide to learn more about the many campaigns and companies we have worked with. 

Since then, we have also created many marketing workshops and classes for the F&B industry. Many of these modules are still running in tertiary institutions such as Temasek Polytechnic Skillsfuture Academy and also ITE College East COC classes, below are some snippets of our lectures and workshops: 

OCM’s F&B workshops: Food and Beverage Marketing Lectures | Workshops - click to watch classes on customer journey map, JTBD and more. 

So, if you are looking for industry practitioners to help you scale your coffee or F&B businesses, do drop us a message or book an appointment. Do also check out our various social media platforms on regular F&B and coffee market updates: 

For regular coffee (F&B) related videos: OCM Youtube

For Daily Coffee Inspiration (fun coffee content): OCM IG

For insights into the coffee (F&B) industry: OCM LinkedIN 

PS: For the coffee lovers, we continue to share coffee articles (and videos) and have also started a free coffee class section (with free online coffee training supported by coffee partners).

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