Kokako is a coffee roastery based in Grey Lynn, Auckland. Established in 2001 as a coffee cart in Aotea Square, Kokako has now grown to supply around 60 hospitality and 150 domestic and retail customers with Fairtrade Organic coffee beans, drinking chocolate and other coffee related products. Kokako focuses on delivering high quality specialty coffee with a focus on sustainability.

Kokako is in growth phase, with healthy sales increases. While wholesale coffee beans have always be Kokako’s main focus, they have begun to develop other innovative products, such as Cold Brewed Coffee.

Cold Brewed Coffee is produced by immersing Kokako coffee grinds in cold water and refrigerating for up to 8 hours. This process differs from what is traditionally known as iced coffee, which is produced hot and then cooled. The finished Kokako Cold Brew product is ready to drink, and has 67% less acidity than conventionally brewed coffee and, as such, is better for the body’s pH levels. The cold water extracts less of the soluble acid from the beans and draws out more sweetness to deliver fruit and chocolate notes.

Kokako approached The FoodBowl to explore options for extending the Cold Brew shelf life. Produced as a chilled product, Kokako Cold Brew experiences a significant change to its flavor profile around days 10 to 14. To ensure consistency of the product in the market, Kokako Cold Brew had to be retailed with a two-week shelf life, restricting potential distribution of the product and meaning the product needed to be produced in small batches quite frequently, in order to match customer ordering patterns.

A shelf life of up to 4-6 weeks would enable greater efficiencies in the production process, as well as opening up the potential for wider distribution and possibly even exporting the product.

The FoodBowl team were able to suggest and trial different technical solutions for Kokako, for example: High Pressure Processing (HPP) and nitrogen gas flushing. An extensive comparison was carried out using various techniques and assessed by in-house sensory panels.

Trials are on-going with Kokako Cold Brew and The FoodBowl to determine the best way to produce this product in large batches with an extended shelf life.