Commercial roasting in the coffee shop??

Discuss roast levels and profiles for espresso, equipment for roasting coffee.
arko986

Postby arko986 » Feb 18, 2019, 10:51 am

Has anyone had one of those 1-2kg drum roasters installed in their coffee shop?

Roasters are not NSF certified, the ones coming from Turkey and China, which are more affordable ones.
I am interested in seeing if anyone had any issue with local Health Department using these roasters.

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Almico

Postby Almico » replying to arko986 » Feb 18, 2019, 12:08 pm

I think it will be a matter of your particular BoH. I'm in New Hope and I think I could roast here if there was space. But some health inspectors are sticklers.

Roasting coffee is a manufacturing process and should not be classified as food prep, but some do. I had one inspector say I needed a triple sink; thankfully her boss said only a hand-washing washing sink was required. What am I going to sterilize, my bean scoop?

In a coffee shop, you are going to have that already, and if the roaster is in the same room, you're golden. But NSF certification could be an issue. And it's a bit of a Catch 22. Of coarse you would like to be sure in advance of buying the roaster, but if you ask ahead of time they will almost certainly say NSF is required. On the other hand, if you have the roaster already they might not make a stink about it...but then again...they might.

I believe Mill City Roasters is in the process of getting their roasters certified, if they haven't done so already.

arko986

Postby arko986 » Feb 18, 2019, 3:59 pm

I talked to Mill City Roasters and many other companies that sell roasters. Mill City has their prices pretty high. 90% of roasters out there are not NSF certified, and technically should not matter as you said, it's not really food prep since after roasting it goes into brewing on NSF espresso machine on high temperature.

So far I hear issues are just in San Diego area, CA. Of course....

Hopefully, someone here on the forum might have such a roaster in a coffee shop to give us some info on this subject.

ira

Postby ira » Feb 18, 2019, 5:54 pm

In West Los Angeles a couple of miles from me is a small shop with a small drum roaster right by the front window that they use to roast all their coffee, so it can be done in California. I think it's a 2K Probat, but I don't remember. Since I watched them pick a tamper of the floor and use it without washing, I don't drink coffee there any more, but the coffee is priced fair, they sell 1/2 pounds and when we need decaf or emergency coffee, it's just a short drive and always roasted within the last few days.

Ira

EddyQ

Postby EddyQ » Feb 19, 2019, 12:05 am

Almico wrote:Roasting coffee is a manufacturing process and should not be classified as food prep, but some do. I had one inspector say I needed a triple sink; thankfully her boss said only a hand-washing washing sink was required. What am I going to sterilize, my bean scoop?


I'm quite sure my inspector would argue with this. The end product is food and everything it touches should be sanitized. This includes the bean scoop, bean buckets, scale etc. While visiting a Starbucks roastery, we needed to wear hair nets and workers near the finished beans were wearing nitril gloves and face masks. But I often wonder how far one needs to go for small shops. What about the grinder? The roaster cooling bin and paddles? I know my inspector doesn't question it. I'm not going to ask either :D

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Almico

Postby Almico » replying to EddyQ » Feb 19, 2019, 12:25 am

They can certainly try to argue, but the argument is not based on facts or reality. The fact is coffee is a dirty, unsanitary product. Once it is processed and put in a dirty burlap sack it cannot be washed. You see images of growers walking on the drying coffee with bare feet. It is not washed after this either, heck, it even has chunks of concrete, stones and metal particles in it. It's then put in a dirty shipping container, loaded onto a dirty ship where it lays in wait in a dirty, dusty warehouse.

I explained to my new health inspector this year that coffee basically comes from a dirty farm...then she cut me off saying "all produce comes from dirty farms". I said "Of course it does, but at least tomatoes can be washed before we process them". Coffee cannot be washed at any time before it is ground and placed in a brewing device, where it sees water for the first time since it left the farm. The roasting process should not be subject to the same health standards as the retail coffee shop and lord help us if it ever comes to that. Wanna really see how much a bag of coffee can cost?

The point it there is no justification for a local BoH to put the same restrictions on coffee that they do with milk and eggs. But that doesn't stop some from doing it anyway. You need to know your local inspector's temperament on the matter.

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TomC
Team HB

Postby TomC » Feb 19, 2019, 1:17 am

Separate from any governing Health Inspector body for your area, you also have to contend with your local version of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (that's what it's called in the Bay Area), who can shut down a business simply over complaints. California has tight regulations, but from what I've heard from other local Bay Area commercial roasters, San Diego County has the most restrictive in the state.

5 years ago, a very popular and trendy bacon restaurant/business was essentially shut down because neighbors complained about the smell of bacon. They got them on the fact that they didn't have proper ventilation for the odor installed (separately, they were also allegedly dumping grease into the storm drains).

Right now, we have a BBQ company that's been in business for 50 years here in Berkeley, who might have to shut down one of their new locations because of smoke complaints.

My coffee roasting friends at Andytown, back when they were just a one-location spot, had to fight with the BAAQMD even though their roaster (at the time just a Probat L5) was smaller than what is regulated under local code, they had an inspector come out and hassle them just over a complaint from a neighbor. When they tried to navigate thru their options and requirements with the inspector, the inspector basically told them they had the authority to close a business and could do it "just because they're having a bad day".

chris_n

Postby chris_n » Feb 19, 2019, 2:11 am

TomC wrote:the inspector basically told them they had the authority to close a business and could do it "just because they're having a bad day".


that's such a disheartening thing to hear

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AssafL

Postby AssafL » Feb 19, 2019, 4:04 am

Almico wrote:...coffee is a dirty, unsanitary product. Once it is processed and put in a dirty burlap sack it cannot be washed. You see images of growers walking on the drying coffee with bare feet. It is not washed after this either, heck, it even has chunks for concrete, stones and metal particles in it. It's then put in a dirty shipping container, loaded onto a dirty ship where it lays in wait in a dirty, dusty warehouse.


Love it! Should be the SCAA slogan.

Nosy neighbors ruin neighborhoods. One of my neighbors plays jazz brass and now (unfortunately)plays with windows closed because of a neighbor. Another (an author) organizes street parties for the kids. Her upstairs neighbor hates the fact kids come around so he throws toilet paper on her trees.

I am sure they hate the fact I roast... but they probably can't tell where it is coming from...

Sad fact is that noisy neighbors are forcing us to eat dishonest, processed foods sold by mega corps. In the end Gilroy smells like garlic not because of the garlic fields - but because of the ConAgra plant. So the small 2kg roaster has to go but the mega Corp with its lawyers stays...

(Lest someone thinks I have something against ConAgra - no; I think both should stay. That inspectors feel empowered because small business owners staked their life saving on a business is clear and can easily become food for abuse. Especially if the businsss owner isn't a smooth talker.).
Scraping away (slowly) at the tyranny of biases and dogma.

OldNuc

Postby OldNuc » Feb 19, 2019, 10:08 am

People require a certain personal space zone for happy living. Most city neighborhoods intrude on this space requirement resulting in what you have experienced.