The 2019 Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE) has concluded with the highest daily record attendance figures in the event’s eight-year history. Total attendance for MICE2019 across the three-day event from 7 to 9 February was 11,978, an increase over the previous record year in 2018. “MICE2019 was a huge success. We were proud to welcome the global coffee community to Melbourne and bring the coffee industry together under the one roof,” says MICE Show Director Simon Coburn. “From global equipment launches to exotic coffee offerings and a national coffee championship, MICE2019 had it all.” MICE is the largest dedicated coffee show in the Southern Hemisphere. More than 145 exhibitors filled the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), demonstrating specialty coffee, technology, and trends. Visitors engaged with coffee roasters, baristas, green bean traders, coffee producers, coffee equipment suppliers, and machine manufacturers, as MICE remained a platform to do business and connect the coffee community. Each year, that collaboration occurs between hundreds of exhibitors and visitors, such as industry leaders, influences, business owners and employees representing the entire supply chain. The MICE Product Innovation Awards returned to commend products introduced over the past 12 months, which are helping to change the face of the Australian specialty coffee industry. Brew Bar’s Energy Bar won the Judge’s Choice Product Innovation Award. Energy Bar allows demanding coffee equipment to operate from a reduced power supply. The unit can also be built to run some equipment for several hours with no additional power supply. Rancilio’s RS1 espresso machine placed second, and Ordermentum’s Business Insights program placed third. United Supplies’ Milkit Dual Milk Tap by was awarded the People’s Choice award. “We’re beyond excited to have won the People’s Choice award for the Milkit Dual Milk Tap system. Being recognised by our peers with this award is a great honour,” says Nicole Saleh, Marketing Director for United Supplies. MICE also saw Australia’s best baristas battle it out at the Australian Specialty Coffee Association (ASCA) 2019 Australian Coffee Championships. After six years competing in the national barista finals, Ona Coffee’s Matthew Lewin was crowned the 2019 ASCA Australian Barista Champion. Two-time Australian Barista Champion Hugh Kelly of Ona Coffee placed second, and Anthony Douglas of Axil Coffee Roasters placed third in the prestigious event, which took place in front of a packed crowd. “The calibre of [the] finals field was just incredible. It’s so hard to win here (in Australia), which is why it feels so surreal to finally win,” Matthew says. “I was competing against what I consider to be some of the best baristas in the world. It’s like winning the lottery, that’s how it feels. I can’t believe it.” Jibbi Little of Jibbijug also proved persistence pays off, winning the ASCA Australian Pauls Professional Latte Art Championship on her fifth attempt. Alice Park of Pure Brew Co placed second, and Zhao Ting Wu of Cote Terra Coffee placed third. Yanina Ferreyra of Project Origin demonstrated beginners luck and skill, winning her first performance in the ASCA Australian Brewers Cup Championship. Two-time Australian Brewers Cup Champion Devin Loong of Ona Coffee placed second, and David Train of Code Black Coffee placed third. MJ Kim of Shamble Coffee Brewers in Melbourne won the ASCA 2019 Australian TCX Cup Tasters Championship, proving slow and stead really can win the race. Juwon Jung of Mikro Coffee Roasters in Victoria placed second, and Matthew Smithies of Five Senses Coffee in Western Australia placed third. In recognition of leadership, drive and passion to the local and international specialty coffee industry, ASCA and the Genovese Family awarded Gina Di Brita of Numero Uno Coffee Roasters this year’s Women in Coffee award. Tilly Sproule of Tim Adams Specialty Coffee was acknowledged as the 2019 Rising Star award. These Awards recognise outstanding contributors to the Australian specialty coffee industry, much like the late Eleonora Genovese made to the Australian coffee community. MICE intends to break its attendance record again in 2020, with the event hosting the 2020 World Brewers Cup and Barista Championship. “MICE launched in 2012 with the purpose of bringing the global coffee community together and that’s exactly what this world-class expo has done. It’s reinforced Australia’s contribution to the global industry, and how much the show supports the growth of individuals, individuals and organisations,” Simon says. “We’re proud of the calibre of exhibitors and how much excitement and joy MICE2019 has brought to the wider coffee community. It’s easy to see why Melbourne is regarded as one of the most progressive and dynamic coffee cities in the world.” Exhibition space for MICE2020 is now available. Don’t miss your chance to book a premium position, with MICE hosting the 2020 World Barista Championship. Contact MICE organisers at firstname.lastname@example.org or +61 3 9690 8766.