The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Malaysia welcomed over 6,000 visitors for the International Café & Beverage Show (ICBS) 2022, 19-21 May. As one of the first in-person international exhibitions in Malaysia since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, ICBS was an important stepping stone towards a return to normality for the Southeast Asian country.
Christopher McCuin, managing director of Montgomery Asia, the show organiser, said: “Prior to the show we were confident that there would be enough interest to support the event as the Malaysian café and coffee industry is growing rapidly, but we were still not sure, following the pandemic, to what level people would be comfortable to travel and attend an event like this.
“Fortunately, it seems that many people are positively enthusiastic about being able to meet up in person again. Of course, it helps that this show was all about coffee and food. People want to savour the aroma and taste for themselves. They can’t do that online.”
Over 150 brands from seven countries exhibited at the event. One of which, the London Tea Company, saw the experience as a positive step forward.
Ansar Syed, managing partner for Thailand and Malaysia at the London Tea Company, commented: “ICBS has been a fantastic opportunity for us to reach out to our target audience. We have had a lot of visitors and the calibre of clients we have met has been really high and resulted in many fruitful discussions.”
ICBS was organised in collaboration with the Malaysia Specialty Coffee Association (MSCA) which hosted the semi-finals and finals of the seventh edition of the Malaysia National Coffee Championship (MNCC) at the event
The winners of the championships:
- Rain Lee Sook Wei, KITA Coffee- Malaysia Barista Championship (MBC) 2022
- Ryan Liew Wei Jet, 103 Coffee Workshop- Malaysia Latte Art Championship (MLAC) 2022
- Tong Wing Jun (pictured), 103 Coffee Workshop- Malaysia Brewers Cup (MBrC) 2022
These newly crowned champion baristas will now represent Malaysia at the World of Coffee Championships (WCC) 2023.
Yip Leong Sum, president of the MSCA, said: “After two years of full or partial lockdown the Malaysian economy is really opening again. At this ICBS we saw a lot of new blood joining the competition which was great to see as this event was designed to encourage young professionals to showcase their talent, skill and creativity in the specialty coffee industry. We hope that the coming year will see more and more people venture into the food and beverage business and look forward to hosting an even better competition at the next edition of ICBS in 2023.”