June 13, 2024

The Sri Lanka Coffee Festival returns: Celebrating the Artistry and Essence of Coffee

3 min read

Lanka Coffee Association, in partnership with Australia’s Market Development Facility (MDF)
and Jetwing Hotels successfully hosted the second annual Sri Lankan Coffee Festival on 19
May 2023.

The coffee sector in Sri Lanka witnessed a notable transformation and attracted a multitude of market
actors leading to significant growth in the industry. This surge in participation has propelled the
industry to new heights. In this context, the Lanka Coffee Association (LCA) was established, as Sri
Lanka’s first coffee association brought together a variety of stakeholders in the coffee industry to
fulfill the goal of developing the specialty coffee sector through several initiatives conducted over the
past two years since its inception.
A key activity that marked the comeback of the Sri Lankan coffee industry was hosting the first-ever
Sri Lankan coffee festival in 2022. Following the success of this inaugural event, the LCA, in
partnership with MDF and Jetwing Group, hosted the second Sri Lankan Coffee Festival on the 19th of
May at Jetwing Colombo 07. The Colombo Coffee Company, Temple Grounds, and Soul Coffee were
gold, silver, and bronze sponsors for the event.

Rinosh Nasar, Chairman, Lanka Coffee Association mentioned, “The Sri Lankan Coffee Festival
hosted by the LCA, is a celebration of our rich coffee heritage and the incredible opportunities ahead.
At the LCA, we are focused on pushing the growth of the Sri Lankan coffee industry from plant to cup
and uplifting the livelihood of our coffee farmers.”

The 2023 Sri Lanka Coffee Festival not only showcased the quality and diversity of local coffee but
also emphasised the importance of promoting investment in this growing sector. The event featured
various activities, including panel discussions on the “Upward Journey of the Coffee Industry in Sri
Lanka: The Challenges Faced and The Way Forward”. Moreover, the festival provided an excellent
platform for coffee growers, processors, and roasters to showcase their products and network with
potential buyers and investors.

The Australian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka and Maldives, Paul Stephens, was the guest of
honor at the festival and delivered the keynote address. He shared Australia’s commitment to
supporting the growth of the specialty coffee sector in Sri Lanka and mentioned, “We are pleased to
witness Sri Lanka’s continued commitment towards sustainable development of the coffee sector, and
the Australian Government will continue to be a proponent to drive prosperity and inclusivity through
our continued collaboration.”

At the mini-exhibition, Colombo Coffee Company, Temple Grounds, Soul Coffee, Helanta Coffee,
Elpitiya Plantations, Valli products presented their coffee, allowing the public to experience the unique
taste and aroma of locally grown coffee. Concurrently, the finals of the LCA Barista Championship
took place with the emerging winner being Suraj Nipunasiri from Butter Boutique (Regional barista
championships were hosted in Dambulla, Galle, and Negombo regions throughout April).
The audience experienced the unveiling of “Sri Lanka’s Coffee Renaissance: A Guide to the
Speciality Coffee Industry” at the festival—a game-changing report by MDF. This report unlocks

invaluable insights into the local specialty coffee sector and reveals key investment opportunities. To
build on the synergies of coffee and tourism, Jetwing Group, Sri Lanka’s leading hotel chain, was the
platinum sponsor for the event. Chairman of Jetwing, Symphony PLC, and The Lighthouse Hotel
PLC, Hiran Cooray added, “Tourism and coffee are like two perfect blends, each complementing the
other in creating a unique and unforgettable experience for travelers seeking to discover the beauty
and coffee culture of Sri Lanka. Being a part of the 2023 Coffee Festival was a great opportunity to
showcase the growing coffee culture and its link to tourism.”

The LCA hopes to further develop the coffee sector and to once again place Sri Lanka in the global
coffee arena. With the support of its ever-growing membership, the association hopes to activate
more programs and initiatives targeting a variety of stakeholders in the coffee value chain in Sri

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