Cerebos is a large manufacturer with a wide range of well known Australian and New Zealand brands under their domain including:
- Caffe L'affare (NZ);
- Atomic (NZ);
- Robert Harris;
- Saxa; and of course,
I'm of two minds about the partnership - it is good for Toby's that they have found a way to grow, but I worry that quality might at some point become the victim of of cost controls within a larger organisational structure.
Toby Smith has been creative and innovative and for the present will remain at the helm of the roastery - but the last quote of their press release gives concern.
"What’s especially appealing about working with Cerebos is their great track record of partnering with innovative coffee companies and helping them grow to reach their full potential. Our agreement means I will continue to manage the business and all staff and management will remain while we work to identify new opportunities." (my emphasis).
The "will remain while" is not the language of continuity or partnership in a press release but of transition. Sad if 'tis so.
Chatting about this earlier with Kamran Nowduschani of Fiori we speculated on whether we are about to see a business similarity with the wine industry where many innovative and high quality producers were gradually consumed by the large corporates. The increasing number of smaller specialty coffee roasters has been a boon to the Australian coffee palate and although sustainability of many small operators is always a concern, it would be disappointing to see coffee roasting contract rather than expand as a small business.
We shall have to wait to see the outcomes and hope that Cerebos value quality over brand recognition.
Further information also at: Hospitality Magazine