Cup of Excellence and Alliance for Coffee Excellence Announce Organizational Changes

The Cup of Excellence (CoE) and Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE) announce updates about their organizational status and respective Board of Directors.

The Alliance for Coffee Excellence and Cup of Excellence have been split into two separate organizations, each with its own focus and funding opportunities. Cup of Excellence, which was formerly owned and operated by ACE, recently became a 501c (3) tax exempt nonprofit organization enabling more opportunity to access greater funding for in-country development.  CoE will focus on the competition parameters and scoring, increasing market access to more farmers, education of both international and national cuppers, quality coffee research and technical and farmer education.  ACE will remain the primary marketplace partner for the Cup of Excellence program and will focus on Cup of Excellence, National Winner and Private Collection Auctions, membership benefits and consumer awareness. 

The two organizations will be closely tied together with advisory panel crossover as well as resource and staff sharing; however, the ACE Board of Directors will be elected by the members and the Cup of Excellence Board will be nominated. 

The Cup of Excellence Board of Directors has just appointed Thomas Pulpan, Director and Founder of Kaffebrenneriet, and Carl Cervone, Co-Founder and COO of Enveritas as Board Members. Noelia Villalobos, Executive Director of the Specialty Coffee Association of Costa Rica, will now hold the position of Board Chair. 

“I am honored to be part of this new COE family and have the opportunity to give back. COE has given so much to our coffee and our producers. This split will help each organization focus on specific topics and areas to enable even more their outreach; always as sister organizations,” commented Noelia Villalobos. 

Alliance for Coffee Excellence has extended its board to include 13 members, increasing the members from the previous 11. With the expansion of the board along with some member shifts, there are now eight positions open for the membership-based nonprofit. Board elections are now in progress with ACE members, in country partners and Head Judges voting in the elections. Voting ends November 19th and an announcement will be made shortly thereafter. 

“For supporters of the Cup of Excellence program there will not be much of a visible change,” said Executive Director for both organizations Darrin Daniel. “ACE and CoE will always be closely tied together prioritizing producer recognition and quality discovery.” 

ACE has recently opened its 2022 membership and is preparing to run the first-ever Ecuador Cup of Excellence auction at the end of November followed by Peru. CoE is currently managing the final stages of the Brazil Cup of Excellence competition and will soon be starting the national stage of the first ever Indonesia competition. 

About Cup of Excellence®
Cup of Excellence (CoE) is a nonprofit 501c (3) tax exempt organization that owns and manages the Cup of Excellence® competition process, conducts training, testing, research projects and other activities designed to increase the discovery and recognition of handcrafted coffees, high quality farmers and the appreciation of exemplary coffees worldwide. For more information, please visit

About The Alliance for Coffee Excellence
The Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE) is a nonprofit 501c (6) tax exempt organization dedicated to the discovery, appreciation, and reward for top quality coffees. Its mission to support excellence in coffee includes trading and auction activities that result in the development of higher incomes and sustainable economic development for its partner coffee producing countries. ACE conducts transparent auctions rewarding individual farmers who work hard to produce exemplary coffees including Cup of Excellence® competition winners, Private Collection Auctions and others that meet its requirements. ACE also conducts cuppings, marketing, events, training, and other activities designed to increase understanding, appreciation, and premiums for exemplary coffee worldwide. ACE enjoys a global membership of top tier coffee companies.  For more information visit

Recent Posts