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WMF unites coffee worlds with Fresh Filtered Coffee technology

From the July 2019 issue.

WMF has introduced Fresh Filtered Coffee technology to its 1500S+ and 5000S+ models, allowing venues to seamlessly provide two forms of coffee with the same machine.

WMF has an ability to identify emerging trends and incorporate them into its coffee machines. Seeing the popularity of telemetry used in other manufacturing industries, the Germany-based company decided to capitalise on the automated communications movement and integrate it in the form of WMF CoffeeConnect.

This time, WMF has pinpointed a growing consumer trend: filter coffee. WMF Head of Product Management Matthias Drexler says while filter coffee has taken off in specialty coffee shops around Europe, it has also seen a resurgence in wider foodservice.

“Filter coffee is a big trend in Europe and around the world. In Germany in particular, filter is one of the most in-demand forms of coffee because of its familiarity. Everyone drinks it at home, with their breakfast, or when they visit hotels,” Drexler says.

A German Coffee Association study released in November 2017 found that 66 per cent of respondents drank filter coffee on a regular basis. It also found that filter was the second most popular method of coffee served at bakeries and restaurants/hotels, behind fully automatic, and the preferred choice for kiosks.

Thomas Ege, WMF Product Manager for the 1500S+ and 5000S+, says the popularity of filter and fully automatic coffee is why WMF has united the two styles in its 1500s+ and 5000S+ models through its new Fresh Filtered Coffee (FFC) technology.

“We were experiencing a high demand for filter coffee, with our customers asking for a better option for fresh filter coffee out of a machine,” Ege says.

“Previously, your options for a filter coffee machine were a paper filter machine or larger model, both of which produce coffee by batch. We now offer a solution for freshly brewed filter coffee cup by cup.”

The FFC system sees coffee extracted through the same bean-to-cup grinding and brewing as it would for an espresso-based beverage. It is then run through the new filter capsule before being served to customers.

“The filter coffee is not only optically different without espresso’s characteristic crema, it has a different taste. The filter capsule removes any leftover oils or sediments, bringing out new flavours in the coffee,” Ege says. “This means you can offer your customers more variety, with different coffee flavours.”

The filter capsule can be used up to 100 times, or for three days, before being changed out. While developing the FFC, Ege found that the capsule could experience blockages when a capsule is reinserted. To overcome this, WMF implemented internal sensors and safety functions to prevent damage to the machine.

An additional steam valve was also introduced to clear coffee residue from the system between beverages. Ege says this new feature maintains the machine’s internal temperature, helps keep it clean, and improves consistency.

“Every cup has the same temp, volume, and taste,” he says.

“If you’re purging all the remaining coffee, different beverages don’t impact each other’s flavour, and, combined with other automatic cleaning steps, the system will stay clean for longer.”

For venues requiring large amounts of filter coffee with less focus on espresso, WMF recommends its 1200F, 9000F, and combiNation F models. However, Ege says a big reason to combine filter and espresso capabilities in one machine is to save on space.

“You do not need two machines sitting on your counter. Save money in only purchasing one machine and save time on cleaning and operations,” he says.

“This means the coffee machine can offer customers a wider variety of coffee with a smaller footprint in the shop.”

He adds these benefits prove useful to different kinds of venues.

“You’re getting freshly brewed coffee cup by cup. You don’t need a menu or follow steps. You only need to press one button to get the beverage you want,” Ege says. “This means small bakeries or kiosks with low demand don’t need to make filter coffee by batch with a paper filter machine. Meanwhile, self-serve locations such as gas stations appreciate being able to offer more types of coffee.

“Even cafés and coffee shops, where there is a high value on freshness and consistent quality, benefit from the machines’ automated aspects.”

Despite WMF’s renewed focus on filter coffee, Ege assures Global Coffee Report the 1500S+ and 5000S+ models produce espresso-based coffees just as well as they did before implementing FFC technology.

“The FFC is an additional component we’ve introduced to the existing models. You can still order an espresso or cappuccino to the same quality as you could before,” he says.

WMF maintains a consistent quality of its espresso-based drinks with its Dynamic Coffee Assist features. This program monitors and adjust the operation and settings of the machine, including grinding, brewing time, and extraction, as necessary.

Dynamic Milk, along with Easy or Basic Milk options, provides the user with options to drink their coffee with differently prepared milk or foam regarding temperature or consistency. Drexler says maintaining a high level of usability is paramount in the fully automatic area.

“Every customer that stands in front of the coffee machine will have a different level of understanding about coffee,” Drexler says.

“Many of them don’t want to go through multiple steps or lots of trouble to get their coffee. We’ve integrated each feature to make using, cleaning, and setting the machine as easy as possible.”

While filter coffee spreads across Europe, WMF sees a similar boom happening in Asia in regards to automation.

“The market for fully automatic coffee machines has grown strongly over the past few years, and I predict it will continue to do so,” Drexler says.

“A lot of convenience stores in Asia, with limited counter space, are asking for options to serve their customers filter coffee as well as espresso-based drinks. So, we see huge potential in this market, especially with the new FFC technology.”

In the near future, WMF intends to further improve its fully automatic machines. One new feature currently in development is a cup height sensor to be released in the second half of 2019.

“New features are going to more and more focus on automation, improving the customer’s interactions with the machines,” Drexler says.

Ege adds that the FFC system is an important step in the evolution of automated coffee technology.

“It improves the quality and variety of what automatic coffee machines can provide, and WMF is the only one offering this option,” he says. “You can have both coffee worlds with one machine.”

For more information, visit www.wmf-coffeemachines.com

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