COVID-19 Update: Melbourne World Coffee Championships Postponed, Further Updates to Follow

COVID-19 Update: Melbourne World Coffee Championships Postponed, Further Updates to Follow

Update March 12, 2020 | Since our announcement released yesterday, March 11, we have received many messages of support from members of the specialty coffee community around the world, for which we’re very thankful, and also some new questions, to which we hope to respond as soon as possible.

In that time, the US government established a ban on travel from Europe. The state of Oregon also announced a 30 day ban on gatherings over 250 people, set to end April 8.

As we announced yesterday, we are working with our partner venues in the US and Poland to review options for postponing Re:co Symposium, the Specialty Coffee Expo, and World of Coffee. We will continue to update this page with new details and inform everyone in our community of any major developments. Please see our full statement from yesterday below.

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The World Health Organization (WHO) has officially named the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. Over the past few weeks, we have been monitoring the outbreak and its impact on our upcoming events and seeking solutions with the health and safety of our community in mind. We have been exploring alternative options to support the best outcomes for all stakeholders who have invested in preparing for our upcoming trade shows.

Today, the 2020 Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE), featuring the 2020 World Barista Championship and World Brewers Cup, has been postponed by the show organizers to November 3-6, 2020. We are very appreciative of our partners at MICE, who have worked closely with the local government in Australia throughout this process, and are supported by local authorities in this decision. 

We can also confirm that we are working with our partner venues in the United States and Poland to review options for postponing Re:co Symposium, the Specialty Coffee Expo, and World of Coffee. 

Since the initial concerns over the spread of COVID-19, we have been meeting daily with various vendors, partners, sponsors, and supporters of our main events, monitoring news and official advisories as well as the questions and concerns coming in from our community. We are grateful for the messages of understanding and support, and all the feedback we have seen and received. We recognize the diverse opinions and challenges of all our global communities. 

Currently, the Oregon Convention Center (OCC) and Travel Portland, who will be hosting Re:co Symposium and Expo, have informed us that despite the state of emergency declaration in Oregon, there is no new guidance on large gatherings and that events will move forward as planned. We are awaiting an update on this stance in light of the recent WHO decision to label the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

We are working to post updates as soon as possible.

YANNIS APOSTOLOPOULOS
CEO, Specialty Coffee Association