It’s a busy time as we get ready for our trip next month back to Machu Picchu. Can’t wait! Meanwhile our workload has exceeded our capacity to maintain let alone get ready, so posts may be a little sporadic for the next several weeks…
Here’s a classic…
So, you love sipping on a delicious espresso, latte, or flat white at your favorite coffee shop, but wish you could have that same great coffee at home. Well then, this article is for you! Kim Ossenblok and Danilo Lodi are both coffee ambassadors at the Italian espresso machine manufacturer Dalla Corte.
They agreed to share with me their advice for brewing barista-quality espresso at home. Preparing good espresso doesn’t have to be as complicated as you might think. With the correct equipment and a little bit of know-how, you’ll soon be pulling great shots in the comfort of your own kitchen.
With increasing use of mechanization and other new technologies, the world’s top two coffee producers, Brazil and Vietnam, are achieving productivity growth that outstrips rivals in places such as Colombia, Central America and Africa.They are set to tighten their grip.
A plunge in global coffee prices in recent months, to their lowest levels in 13 years, has begun to trigger a massive shake-out in the market in which only the most efficient producers will thrive, according to coffee traders and analysts.Rival producers elsewhere in the world are increasingly likely to be driven to the margins, unable to make money from a crop they have grown for generations. Some are already turning to alternative crops while others are abandoning their farms completely.Such shifts are almost irreversible for perennial crops like coffee, as the decision to abandon or cut down trees can hit production for several years.
“Brazil and Vietnam have had consistent increases in productivity, other countries have not,” said Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University, citing advances in mechanization, selective crop breeding techniques and irrigation technology.
In Colombia and Central America, coffee is typically grown on hillsides where mechanization is more difficult, and hand-picking cherries has kept production costs relatively high. The African sector, meanwhile, is dominated by small-scale farmers often unable to raise the capital needed for new techniques.
US Army researchers have developed an online tool that suggests how much coffee you should really drink to stay awake. The algorithm is not only meant to help you become more aware of how much caffeine you’re drinking but can also help reduce your coffee consumption.
For the study, which was published in the trade magazine “Sleep”, participants underwent several sleep deprivation and shift work scenarios. Researchers observed how their lack of sleep affected alertness and performance and how much caffeine influenced this.
In some cases, study participants had to stay awake for up to 60 hours and their regular sleeping time was severely shortened. The research team then developed the Open Access tool 2B-Alert Web 2.0 based on these results.