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Coffee Contest: Who has the best bean?

Cup of Joe. Morning Brown. Jitter juice. Java. Caffeine infusion. Call it what you will, but we can all agree that most of us don’t put our best foot forward without a cup of coffee in the morning.

When it comes to hot drinks, Australians have discerning tastes – which is a nice way of saying we’re a bunch of coffee snobs – so we’re always on the hunt for the perfect bean.

The search is over. Aldi Australia has won the Coffee Judges’ election as Overall Large Chain Champion in the world’s largest coffee roasting competition, The Golden Bean.

In news that further fueled the caffeine wars and fueled rivalries between the states, the big franchise trophy went to the Victorian Black Bag Roasters, who roasted “Lazzio Coffee” for Aldi.

Aldi’s Lazzio brand triumphed over more than 800 entrants from across Australasia to take home the coveted prize.

Aldi’s Lazzio won several prizes during the competition. Photo: Aldi

More than 100 coffee aficionados made their way through copious cups to choose the winner.

In addition to the big win, Aldi’s Lazzio also took home four other Golden Beans medals in the categories of “super-automatic”, “filter”, “chain shop espresso” and “chain shop milk-based”.

Commenting on winning the award, Varun Raheja, director of purchasing for Aldi Australia, said the supermarket is committed to providing Australian coffee lovers with quality at the lowest possible price.

“Roasted in Melbourne, we developed the Lazzio Coffee range to give customers a cafe experience at home, without the hefty price tag,” he said.

“Our goal is to always exceed our customers’ expectations, and we couldn’t be more pleased and proud to see the Lazzio range recognized again in these awards.”

Lance Brown, Sales Director of Black Bag Roasters, said: “Lazzio beans have consistently maintained their uncompromising quality standards from our farmers to the consumer’s cups.

“This recognition at the world’s largest roasting competition wraps up an already great 2022 for Aldi ‘Lazzio Coffee’ and Black Bag Roasters, having also won the Canstar Blue Award for Best Coffee for the second year in a row. We can’t wait to see where our eighth year of partnership with Aldi takes us.”

Bringing the café experience to the home is a smart move, as according to market and consumer data company Statista, the COVID pandemic has changed our drinking habits, with 37 percent more of the drink being consumed at home.

Nearly two-thirds of Australians have some sort of coffee machine at home, and half of the population own a coffee pod machine.

Yes, we are really addicted. Australians consume an average of 1.91 kilograms of coffee per person annually, according to market and consumer data company Statista.

Bean consumption increased by 49 percent.

Although drinking habits have changed, Australians overwhelmingly love their coffee on the go. About 23 percent of all orders are take-out, putting Australia fourth after Japan, the United States and Canada in take-out.

The most popular brew sold in cafes is the latte, followed by the flat white and the cappuccino.

Coffee is a big money earner – the industry generates $8.6 billion in revenue annually.