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A master’s degree that smells good

Special Correspondent

Bangalore is among 17 centres worldwide for the University of Coffee


The university is headquartered in Trieste, Italy

Indian students can also apply for the course


— PHOTO: S.R. RAGHUNATHAN

HOT TOPIC: Coffee is now a subject for structured study at the university level.

BANGALORE: Coffee, the beverage that refreshes and can be addictive, is now a subject for structured study at the university level. Bangalore will be one of the 17 centres worldwide for the University of Coffee, headquartered in Trieste, Italy.

Italy grows no coffee, but the university has been set up by a trust established by the Illycaffe, which has been importing and marketing coffee worldwide since 1933.

It had a turnover of €280 million last year and its limited presence so far in India is confined to an outlet at the Bengaluru International Airport, a trial run as the company terms it.

“India, along with Brazil and Colombia, is important to the coffee industry, and to make it sustainable when the global economy is changing, we felt a scientific study from the level of the grower to marketing was necessary,” said Roberto Morelli, Director, Illycaffe, who also edits an Italian newspaper. Mr. Morelli told reporters here on Thursday: “We have an ongoing programme with the University of Oxford, which is attended by those connected with the industry, including many from coffee-growing countries. Now we have our own university with study centres in 17 countries, including India.”

A master’s degree is now being planned, and organisations such as the Indian Coffee Board will help design the curriculum. There will be a number of full scholarships and Indian students can also apply. Emphasis will be actual field visits combined with the scientific aspects of coffee growing and processing.

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