NKG Pace is back! Now in its third year, NKG Pace is a joint venture between Neumann Gruppe USA and the Coffee Coalition to Advance Racial Equity (CCRE) seeking to advance racial equity in the specialty coffee industry. The paid, year-long program provides hands-on experience to help train Black coffee professionals on the inner workings of the supply chain, and applications are currently open for the class of 2024-25.
For the program, participants will undertake a global experience learning the coffee trade, for which they will receive a salary along with healthcare and other benefits. The workload includes time in the lab assisting QC manager, independent study, building a QC foundation, and working with trade, logistics, and customer service teams. While much of the in-person, hands-on training will come at one of the Neumann Kaffee Gruppe’s US outposts—InterAmerican, Atlas Coffee Importers, and Rothfos Corporation—participants will also have access to a bi-monthly speakers series featuring global NKG colleagues from Brazil, Kenya, Honduras, Papua New Guinea, and England. Additionally, there will be a week-long trip to a partner expert company abroad, like Ceca in Costa Rica, to learn more about the inner working of exporting, processing, and farming.
Stateside, the program includes an orientation in Hoboken, New Jersey, to meet fellow participants, program coordinators, and various other industry professionals. There will be regular visits to warehouses, events, and clients as well as week-long visits to various NKG US offices to learn from different teams and change areas of focus. And, the program offers travel to a testing site for participants looking to take the Q exam, which comes at no fee thanks to the Coffee Quality Institute.
For this year, NKG Pace will admit up to three Black coffee professionals for the year-long program. Applications can be made here, and must be submitted by November 30th at 5:00pm ET. Semi-Finalists will be notified by December 15th, with final selections announced on February 26th. Then in early May, participants will begin their stay in the program.
For more information or to submit an application, visit the NKG Pace official website.