Our sustainability manifesto

For 85 years we have respected coffee because it is also a sustainability experience.

Good coffee is a source of well-being for individuals, the community and the environment, as well as a pleasure for the senses. Coffee is also a sustainability experience. This is why it needs to be known and respected and we have been doing this for 85 years.

Taste for Sustainability

For Caffè Milani, sustainability is a decisive choice, a pact of trust made with its entire community, a path of continuous improvement in its journey as a company.

Producing everything necessary well, guaranteeing dignity and well-being for all those involved in the supply chain, without wasting material, while respecting the ecosystem, biodiversity and energy consumption, including for future generations: this is what sustainability means today, interpreted in its three environmental, economic and social dimensions.

Over 2.5 billion cups of coffee are consumed every day, making it one of the most widely consumed beverages globally, indispensable both as an individual habit and as a collective social ritual. However, this production also has a significant environmental impact in terms of soil fertility, biodiversity and use of energy and water resources. Progressively reducing it at all stages of the supply chain “from the field to the cup” needs to be the commitment that unites the entire coffee world.

Caffè Milani, a historic coffee roasting company backed by 85 years of tradition and innovation, has decided to interpret the focus on these issues by incorporating them into its corporate strategy as a guarantee of the company’s care for the product and its quality and safety, enhancement of the various coffee-related professions, promotion of its culture and attention to consumers.

For Caffè Milani, being sustainable means implementing processes and initiatives aimed at ensuring the economic and social well-being of coffee so that they become factors for growth and continuous improvement of the company’s competitiveness.

Its business is centred around sensory and nutritional sustainability, identified as competitive factors of Caffè Milani’s outstanding quality to benefit the entire supply chain, which has made coffee culture recognition a conscious product choice.

Taste for Quality

For Caffè Milani, quality is a goal that continually renews its objectives associated with its avowed desire to certify the truth of the excellence of all its products.

With unwavering passion and knowledge of the product it handles, for 85 years Caffè Milani has offered the market an ever broader and more diversified range of coffee types – distinguished by their excellence and variety – developed and offered with respect for the highest quality.

The aroma, subtle flavours and specific character of each coffee can only be released if the beans are carefully and skilfully selected, following them on their journey from their countries of origin to their arrival at the company, and if the secret of perfect roasting is masterfully preserved. When the master roaster creates the most harmonious blend and identifies the ideal temperature and the exact moment between the first crack of the coffee bean, which reveals its sensory profile in all its richness, and the second crack,which condemns it to a flat, indistinct flavour, he puts into practice ancient expertise that only knowledge of the product, its origin, long experience linked to respect for tradition, constant monitoring of all steps, strict attention to hygiene and food safety, and appropriate equipment can guarantee.

The desire to offer absolute excellence in every cup is the starting point for all Caffè Milani blends and single origins, many of which have received the prestigious IEI (Italian Espresso Institute) product certification as ‘Certified Italian Espresso’, an objective and measurable sensory quality standard developed in collaboration with the International Coffee Institute, tasting experts and professors from the University of Udine and Turin, through thousands of consumer and laboratory tests. This certification was also achieved by the Action organic blend, which bears the Euro leaf logo identifying products that meet all the strict European organic criteria.

The company’s quality-oriented approach and practices have always allowed Caffè Milani to be recognised as an outstanding made in Italy company by the Certified Italian Excellence Institute, which protects the economic, cultural and traditional value of the best Italian companies, including as a cohesion and growth factor for the communities and areas in which they operate.

Taste for Tradition and Culture

Caffè Milani regards culture and tradition as the necessary tools for understanding the essence and authentic pleasure of coffee consumption. An act that must be done with awareness and knowledge.

Coffee can only be understood by getting to know it. When Celestino Milani opened his shop in the historic centre of Como in 1937, the quality of his roastery immediately became a point of reference for all coffee lovers who recognised – in the aroma of that coffee – the painstaking selection of the different varieties, the secrets of roasting and the recipes for the finest blends. Celestino became a ‘master roaster’, a guardian of the tradition, expertise and charm of Italian-style coffee.

Surrounding the Equator and lying between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn is the Coffee Belt, where favourable climate conditions for cultivation requiring a high degree of humidity can be found.

In its constant pursuit of the best and most interesting varieties to deliver to its customers, Caffè Milani has chosen to source from Brazil, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Colombia, Galapagos, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Puerto Rico, Indonesia, Panama, Cuba, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Peru, Mexico, St. Helena, Tanzania, India, Uganda and Java. This search entails an exploration across continents, agronomic practices, social and production systems, cultures and consumption habits that greatly vary and often face critical issues, but all share production rooted in the deepest local traditions.

Whether it is the prized Arabica variety, the so-called highland coffee, or the more resistant Robusta variety, different botanical varieties are cultivated in every country of the Coffee Belt, with specific sensory qualities that can be appreciated both for their purity – in the single-origin coffees that Caffè Milani was among the first to offer on the Italian market – and in blends developed to satisfy different palates and taste and body requirements.

When we talk about coffee, we are therefore talking about a complex and fascinating world of which Caffè Milani wants to promote increasingly deeper and more conscious consumption and knowledge. With this aim, it has launched Caffè&Caffè in a number of cities, outstanding made in Italy establishments where coffee is the unique focus, in line with a modern interpretation of 18th-century coffee shops.

For the same reason, the company’s new plant, opened in 2017, has been extended with an additional, totally glazed building on three levels devoted to communicating the tradition and soul of coffee. This is home to the ‘Esposizione Caffè Milani’, an experiential exhibition devoted to the education and dissemination of coffee culture, highlighting each production step: cultivation, drupe selection, bean processing and roasting, while a wide range of coffee makers and espresso coffee equipment, featuring very valuable and rare pieces, illustrates and testifies to the history of this drink and the evolution of its consumption in different European and non-European countries from 1700 to the present day.

The journey into the coffee world is completed by an ornamental greenhouse, powered by solar panels for the cultivation of different varieties of the Coffea plant, and the Training Centre, a well-equipped room where baristas are taught all the secrets of coffee with a perfect aroma, body and taste. And how best to prepare it.

Taste for the Environment

For Caffè Milani, respect for the environment is a concrete value choice at the heart of all the company’s choices to continuously reduce the environmental impact of its business.

The climate crisis, the shortage of water resources and the protection of biodiversity and soil fertility are factors that raise urgent questions for the coffee world and pose critical challenges for the entire supply chain, partly in light of the increasing awareness among all stakeholders and end consumers of sustainable development and material-saving issues.

From optimising water resources to limiting the use of fertilisers, from reducing processing waste to using vegetable and non-synthetic oils for roasting machinery, from energy efficiency to optimising logistics, from waste management to reusing waste in other production chains in line with the principles of the circular economy.

Many areas and actions contribute to reducing coffee’s environmental impact, ‘from the field to the cup’, in the pursuit of increasingly responsible and ‘measured’ management of production and consumption.

Underlying the careful selection of all the green coffee purchased by Caffè Milani is an awareness, acquired over time, that the quality of the beans and their aromatic intensity strictly depends on the adoption of good agronomic practices, compliance with stringent hygiene and food safety standards, and processing techniques based on ancient expertise passed down from generation to generation.

As a sign of its love for the environment and concern for its protection, Caffè Milani has enriched its market assortment with the Action organic blend, composed of 100% Arabica coffee, grown in small certified farms using ancient methods, exclusively using natural fertilisers without resorting to pesticides and chemicals. This blend has been recognised as a ‘Certified Italian Espresso’ product and was awarded the gold medal at the 2016 International Coffee Tasting.

Along with its focus on production processes and the quality of its range, in its 85th year of business Caffè Milani decided to offer innovative product packaging as further proof of its choice of ever greater product sustainability. A new line of the brand’s single-origin coffees and blends will be packaged in a ready-for-recycling pack. This is the latest step following the adoption of 100% and infinitely recyclable aluminium cans, a 40% reduction in the thickness of aluminium film in traditional packaging, and, where possible, the use of cardboard instead of plastic for packaging used in distribution.

To meet coffee preservation requirements and the need to respect the environment, the new chosen material is a mix of multilayer polyolefins that ensure the product’s freshness and quality and are easy to recycle via separate waste disposal.

Taste for Sensory Appeal

For Milani, sensory sustainability is the first certification that rewards the most authentic quality of a good coffee, from origin to roasting, to packaging, to the cup.

“Ah! How sweet coffee tastes, more delicious than a thousand kisses, milder than muscatel wine! Coffee, I have to have coffee, and, if someone wants to pamper me, ah, then bring me coffee as a gift!” sings Lieschen in one of Johann Sebastian Bach’s secular cantatas composed in the first half of the 18th century. Before her father, who wants to forbid her to drink it, the girl indulges in a veritable eulogy, a declaration of love and emancipation at the same time, but above all a perfect description of the taste of coffee, identified as ‘sweet’, ‘lovable’ and ‘mild’.

The best and most satisfying coffee contains less caffeine and fewer phenolic acids, which are responsible for the drink’s astringent and bitter taste.

The best and most satisfying coffee contains less caffeine and fewer phenolic acids, which are responsible for the drink’s astringent and bitter taste. The amount of bitterness in coffee is the first indicator of its quality, which is closely linked to its sustainability, i.e. whether or not it is produced according to traditional and natural methods and in compliance with the strictest food safety regulations. Especially since coffee, a plant-based product that can only undergo simple processing such as roasting, cannot be supplemented with additives in any way. Its truest identity therefore lies in its flavour.

The goodness of coffee also guarantees the product’s healthier sensory profile,

since the high quality of the blend used corresponds to a lower amount of caffeine, in the region of up to 60%, as is the case with the prized Arabica variety (1.2-1.7%), compared to the Robusta variety (1.6-3.2%).

To this end, the IEI (Italian Espresso Institute) has objectively identified the characteristics of espresso coffee and its sensory sustainability: “A thick, finely textured cream, with a hazelnut colour tending towards dark brown, intensified by reddish brown highlights. The aroma should be intense and rich with notes of flowers, fruit, chocolate and toast. In the mouth, espresso should be full-bodied and velvety, just the right amount of bitter and never astringent.”

It was on the basis of this definition that the IEI drew up a detailed production specification for the certification of authentic Italian espresso, a specification to which Caffè Milani strictly adheres.

Taste for Nutritional Properties

For Caffè Milani, the focus on nutritional sustainability means taking care of consumers who choose its brand every day. Good coffee is a source of well-being, as well as a pleasure for the senses. And Caffè Milani has known this for 85 years.

Appreciating coffee also means knowing its nutritional characteristics so that our consumption habits can define a lifestyle of individual well-being and balance with the environment around us.

Analysed from a nutritional standpoint, coffee is a drink with very strong stimulating properties due to the presence of caffeine, which, in order to have beneficial effects on the body, must not exceed an average of 400 milligrams per day (a cup of espresso can contain 50 to 70 mg, a cup of mocha up to 120 mg), subject to individual and gender differences and the established habits of each individual.

Caffeine, taken in the right amount, has a tonic and energising effect, can facilitate digestion at the end of a meal, stimulate the metabolism to reduce fat and induce a sense of fullness. Moreover, caffeic acid, of which coffee is the main source, has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which have been the subject of numerous scientific investigations.

Excessive caffeine, on the other hand, can produce discomfort such as heartburn and hyperacidity, hypertension, insomnia, and, especially for women, reduced absorption of iron from food.

However, also from the standpoint of nutrition and effects on the body, it is the quality of the coffee you drink that makes all the difference, both in terms of the choice and origin of the raw material and of expertise in its processing.

Proper roasting aims to produce the Maillard reaction in coffee, giving the bean its characteristic brown colour and aromas without ‘burning’ it, which could have negative consequences for its taste and health.

Taste for Innovation

For Caffè Milani, innovation means updating and improving the experience of its production and consumption with an awareness that ‘coffee time’ is an indispensable and irreplaceable moment in our daily lives.

Italy is the home of the moka pot and espresso coffee, two coffee extraction methods that represent our ‘made in Italy’ on an international level: the much-loved coffee maker was invented in 1933 by Alfonso Bialetti, while the espresso machine was perfected in 1938 by Achille Gaggia, based on an invention by Angelo Moriondo from Turin in 1884.

Italy is the coffee industry.

Italian creativity and its ability to imagine and produce solutions for coffee preparation has left an indelible mark on the history of this drink, which over time has become an indispensable habit and social ritual for more than 90% of Italians, who treat themselves to at least one cup every day.

After all, since its inception, coffee has always been synonymous with social, cultural and economic innovation. The opening of the first coffee shops, along with the intoxicating aromas they brought to the city, also marked the emergence of comfortable places for meeting and conversation between different social classes, all thanks to a drink that could break down boundaries and become an opportunity for exchange and dialogue.

Today, Caffè Milani’s innovation is geared towards the adoption of increasingly high-performance technologies, material and resource savings, and research into eco-friendly packaging and the circular economy of waste. However, it also retains a fascinating flair for proposing and perfecting ‘alternative’ coffee extraction techniques, often imported from abroad, such as Filter Coffee, based on an infusion system, or the impressive Syphon methodalso based on infusion, or Cold drip, based on cold extraction through percolation, or even the French Press ,, the traditional transalpine plunger coffee maker. A wide-ranging selection of drink preparation techniques accompanies the constant search for increasingly certified crops to promote the production, consumption and culture of high-quality coffee.

Taste for Work and Training

At Caffè Milani, respect for work is accompanied by continuous training processes carried out within the academy to further qualify professional baristas. Making coffee well is crucial to appreciating its quality and its sensory and nutritional properties.

A Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) no. 8 of the UN’s 2030 Agenda, the international commitment charter for sustainable development, aims to promote sustainable labour growth, while respecting human rights. There are around 120 million people worldwide who make their living from coffee production, in more than 80 different countries, often in contexts where their rights are in jeopardy.

In Italy, too, the coffee and foodservice industry plays an important role in terms of employment and wealth generation. Despite this, adequate recognition and professional training of all actors in the supply chain is still an unresolved issue, especially in the final stages, in which accompanying the product to the final consumer becomes a crucial step in order to truly appreciate its value, quality and subtleties of flavour.

This is why the Caffè&Caffè stores opened by Caffè Milani are spaces designed to allow people to savour and discover the universe of this beverage, and, at the same time, as an opportunity to foster the entrepreneurial, innovative mindset and passion of young people in particular, resulting in an increasingly qualified and responsible business. In this respect, the figure of the Brand Ambassador is central, acting as an authoritative point of reference in structuring the entire range of establishments.

Expertise and high-quality products, hallmarks of Caffè Milani’s identity, go hand in hand with an equally crucial focus on training industry professionals. This is the basis for Altascuola Coffee Training, the theoretical and practical training project focused on the professional training of HoReCa workers, developed in collaboration with the International Institute of Coffee Tasters (IIAC) and the Italian Espresso Institute (IEI), which operates one of its four branches nationwide in the Caffè Milani plant in Lipomo, employing outstanding trainers.

With a view to continuous training and updating based on learning by doing, Caffè Milani has initiated several collaborations with Confcommercio Como and Lecco and with ENAIP Lombardia, an association operating in the field of education, vocational training and active employment policies. To celebrate the company’s 85th anniversary, a recipe book was created using Caffè Milani blends and single-origin coffees as the main ingredients, developed around the sustainable principles no waste, km 0 products and enhancement of the local production network.

Finally, collaboration with the area’s hotel schools and CFPs (Vocational Training Centres) has resulted in workshop activities held in the large, well-equipped Altascuola Coffee Training room and in the classrooms of the various schools.

As outlined in SDG 4 of the Paris Agenda, high-quality education and training are crucial for creating and improving the living conditions of people, communities and societies, including in initiatives that combine basic education and vocational training.

Taste for the Circular Economy

For Caffè Milani, the circular economy signifies the realisation that there is no waste in coffee processing, but only resources and secondary raw materials that increase its value.

Applying the principles of the circular economy to the coffee supply chain means learning to value all production waste products as resources and secondary raw materials.

With an estimated production in Italy of almost 300,000 tonnes of ‘outside the home’ coffee grounds, produced by the foodservice sector, to which we must add that of ‘at home’ consumption, the recovery and reuse of all forms of waste is clearly an interesting prospect, studied in recent years by extensive research and experimentation.

Today, coffee grounds can be used as a natural fertiliser, as a secondary raw material for biofuels, as a heavy metal absorbent in wastewater treatment and as a perfect substrate for growing mushrooms without consuming soil. There are also projects to transform coffee grounds into a biodegradable biopolymer with which to create furniture and design objects.

Even at the start of its transformation process, coffee can prove to be a source of secondary raw material thanks to the recovery and reuse of silverskin, the silvery film that coats the beans and is released after roasting. This particular industrial waste can be used for the production of paper and cosmetics, according to research conducted jointly by the CNR Institute of Molecular Science and Technologies, the University of Milan and Eurac Research.

Carefully considering all innovation and research possibilities in the area of the circular economy of coffee waste, Caffè Milani is committed to achieving maximum reduction of processing waste and proper management and disposal of company waste.

Jute, a natural material used to manufacture the 60 kg sacks in which green coffee travels to the company’s factory, deserves a separate mention. Once they have fulfilled their use as packaging, the sacks, with their beautiful, vibrant colours and designs from the countries of origin, are given a second life as upholstery fabric for sofas, armchairs and ottomans, or, together with waste from the reels, are used as material for making eco-fashion accessories such as bags, clutch bags and backpacks. This is all thanks to the creativity and skill of the young people of In-Presa, an organisation in Carate Brianza – with which Caffè Milani has been collaborating for years – that deals with vocational training, job placement, orientation, school support and group activities for young people of compulsory education age.

As outlined in SDG 12 on responsible production and consumption, sustainable development aims to “do more and better with less” by reducing resource use, degradation and pollution throughout the production cycle, thereby improving everyone’s quality of life. And Caffè Milani works daily to translate this principle into concrete reality.

Taste for Community

Caffè Milani has brought the world of coffee to its homeland. A local focus has always been central to the identity of the company, which supports local socio-cultural initiatives. Because a good coffee also smells of solidarity.

“To those who, instead of drinking a coffee in a hurry, take the time to savour and enjoy it. These are the people to whom we want to devote our attention, sharing our secrets and our passion.” With these words, Pierluigi Milani, chairman of Caffè Milani, renews his daily invitation to taste a good Italian coffee. This invitation dates back to 1937, when Celestino Milani’s workshop was established in the historic centre of Como, a stone’s throw from the lake.

Since that day, Caffè Milani has embodied the excellence of its homeland. Now that its coffee is known worldwide and has made its way to China and Japan, the company’s ties to its land and community have remained unchanged.

Caffè Milani has brought the world of coffee to its homeland It has aimed to illustrate the whole world that lies behind the beans ground to produce this coffee, made up of places, stories, people and destinies.

The company headquarters, which has a building entirely dedicated to the ‘Esposizione Caffè Milani’, open to visits from schoolchildren and all enthusiasts, testifies to a relationship of exchange seen as necessary in order to create value for the entire community.

Caffè Milani has initiated numerous collaborations to support the local area, with the Como Social Theatre, in the cultural field, with the Canturino Cycling Club and Comense Fencing Club, in sports, with the province’s hotel schools, in the training sphere, and with social cooperatives in the field of training and inclusion.

Taste for Sustainability

For Caffè Milani, sustainability is a decisive choice, a pact of trust made with its entire community, a path of continuous improvement in its journey as a company.

Producing everything necessary well, guaranteeing dignity and well-being for all those involved in the supply chain, without wasting material, while respecting the ecosystem, biodiversity and energy consumption, including for future generations: this is what sustainability means today, interpreted in its three environmental, economic and social dimensions.

Over 2.5 billion cups of coffee are consumed every day, making it one of the most widely consumed beverages globally, indispensable both as an individual habit and as a collective social ritual. However, this production also has a significant environmental impact in terms of soil fertility, biodiversity and use of energy and water resources. Progressively reducing it at all stages of the supply chain “from the field to the cup” needs to be the commitment that unites the entire coffee world.

Caffè Milani, a historic coffee roasting company backed by 85 years of tradition and innovation, has decided to interpret the focus on these issues by incorporating them into its corporate strategy as a guarantee of the company’s care for the product and its quality and safety, enhancement of the various coffee-related professions, promotion of its culture and attention to consumers.

For Caffè Milani, being sustainable means implementing processes and initiatives aimed at ensuring the economic and social well-being of coffee so that they become factors for growth and continuous improvement of the company’s competitiveness.

Its business is centred around sensory and nutritional sustainability, identified as competitive factors of Caffè Milani’s outstanding quality to benefit the entire supply chain, which has made coffee culture recognition a conscious product choice.

Taste for Quality

For Caffè Milani, quality is a goal that continually renews its objectives associated with its avowed desire to certify the truth of the excellence of all its products.

With unwavering passion and knowledge of the product it handles, for 85 years Caffè Milani has offered the market an ever broader and more diversified range of coffee types – distinguished by their excellence and variety – developed and offered with respect for the highest quality.

The aroma, subtle flavours and specific character of each coffee can only be released if the beans are carefully and skilfully selected, following them on their journey from their countries of origin to their arrival at the company, and if the secret of perfect roasting is masterfully preserved. When the master roaster creates the most harmonious blend and identifies the ideal temperature and the exact moment between the first crack of the coffee bean, which reveals its sensory profile in all its richness, and the second crack, which condemns it to a flat, indistinct flavour, he puts into practice ancient expertise that only knowledge of the product, its origin, long experience linked to respect for tradition, constant monitoring of all steps, strict attention to hygiene and food safety, and appropriate equipment can guarantee.

The desire to offer absolute excellence in every cup is the starting point for all Caffè Milani blends and single origins, many of which have received the prestigious IEI (Italian Espresso Institute) product certification as ‘Certified Italian Espresso’, an objective and measurable sensory quality standard developed in collaboration with the International Coffee Institute, tasting experts and professors from the University of Udine and Turin, through thousands of consumer and laboratory tests. This certification was also achieved by the Action organic blend, which bears the Euro leaf logo identifying products that meet all the strict European organic criteria.

The company’s quality-oriented approach and practices have always allowed Caffè Milani to be recognised as an outstanding made in Italy company by the Certified Italian Excellence Institute, which protects the economic, cultural and traditional value of the best Italian companies, including as a cohesion and growth factor for the communities and areas in which they operate.

Taste for Tradition and Culture

Caffè Milani regards culture and tradition as the necessary tools for understanding the essence and authentic pleasure of coffee consumption. An act that must be done with awareness and knowledge.

Coffee can only be understood by getting to know it. When Celestino Milani opened his shop in the historic centre of Como in 1937, the quality of his roastery immediately became a point of reference for all coffee lovers who recognised – in the aroma of that coffee – the painstaking selection of the different varieties, the secrets of roasting and the recipes for the finest blends. Celestino became a ‘master roaster’, a guardian of the tradition, expertise and charm of Italian-style coffee.

Surrounding the Equator and lying between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn is the Coffee Belt, where favourable climate conditions for cultivation requiring a high degree of humidity can be found.

In its constant pursuit of the best and most interesting varieties to deliver to its customers, Caffè Milani has chosen to source from Brazil, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Colombia, Galapagos, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Puerto Rico, Indonesia, Panama, Cuba, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Peru, Mexico, St. Helena, Tanzania, India, Uganda and Java. This search entails an exploration across continents, agronomic practices, social and production systems, cultures and consumption habits that greatly vary and often face critical issues, but all share production rooted in the deepest local traditions.

Whether it is the prized Arabica variety, the so-called highland coffee, or the more resistant Robusta variety, different botanical varieties are cultivated in every country of the Coffee Belt, with specific sensory qualities that can be appreciated both for their purity – in the single-origin coffees that Caffè Milani was among the first to offer on the Italian market – and in blends developed to satisfy different palates and taste and body requirements.

When we talk about coffee, we are therefore talking about a complex and fascinating world of which Caffè Milani wants to promote increasingly deeper and more conscious consumption and knowledge. With this aim, it has launched Caffè&Caffè in a number of cities, outstanding made in Italyestablishments where coffee is the unique focus, in line with a modern interpretation of 18th-century coffee shops.

For the same reason, the company’s new plant, opened in 2017, has been extended with an additional, totally glazed building on three levels devoted to communicating the tradition and soul of coffee. This is home to the ‘Esposizione Caffè Milani’, an experiential exhibition devoted to the education and dissemination of coffee culture, highlighting each production step: cultivation, drupe selection, bean processing and roasting, while a wide range of coffee makers and espresso coffee equipment, featuring very valuable and rare pieces, illustrates and testifies to the history of this drink and the evolution of its consumption in different European and non-European countries from 1700 to the present day.

The journey into the coffee world is completed by an ornamental greenhouse, powered by solar panels for the cultivation of different varieties of the Coffea plant, and theTraining Centre, a well-equipped room where baristas are taught all the secrets of coffee with a perfect aroma, body and taste. And how best to prepare it.

Taste for the Environment

For Caffè Milani, respect for the environment is a concrete value choice at the heart of all the company’s choices to continuously reduce the environmental impact of its business.

The climate crisis, the shortage of water resources and the protection of biodiversity and soil fertility are factors that raise urgent questions for the coffee world and pose critical challenges for the entire supply chain, partly in light of the increasing awareness among all stakeholders and end consumers of sustainable development and material-saving issues.

From optimising water resources to limiting the use of fertilisers, from reducing processing waste to using vegetable and non-synthetic oils for roasting machinery, from energy efficiency to optimising logistics, from waste management to reusing waste in other production chains in line with the principles of the circular economy.

Many areas and actions contribute to reducing coffee’s environmental impact, ‘from the field to the cup’, in the pursuit of increasingly responsible and ‘measured’ management of production and consumption.

Underlying the careful selection of all the green coffee purchased by Caffè Milani is an awareness, acquired over time, that the quality of the beans and their aromatic intensity strictly depends on the adoption of good agronomic practices, compliance with stringent hygiene and food safety standards, and processing techniques based on ancient expertise passed down from generation to generation.

As a sign of its love for the environment and concern for its protection, Caffè Milani has enriched its market assortment with the Action organic blend, composed of 100% Arabica coffee, grown in small certified farms using ancient methods, exclusively using natural fertilisers without resorting to pesticides and chemicals. This blend has been recognised as a ‘Certified Italian Espresso’ product and was awarded the gold medal at the 2016 International Coffee Tasting.

Along with its focus on production processes and the quality of its range, in its 85th year of business Caffè Milani decided to offer innovative product packaging as further proof of its choice of ever greater product sustainability. A new line of the brand’s single-origin coffees and blends will be packaged in a ready-for-recycling pack. This is the latest step following the adoption of 100% and infinitely recyclable aluminium cans, a 40% reduction in the thickness of aluminium film in traditional packaging, and, where possible, the use of cardboard instead of plastic for packaging used in distribution.

To meet coffee preservation requirements and the need to respect the environment, the new chosen material is a mix of multilayer polyolefins that ensure the product’s freshness and quality and are easy to recycle via separate waste disposal.

Taste for Sensory Appeal

For Milani, sensory sustainability is the first certification that rewards the most authentic quality of a good coffee, from origin to roasting, to packaging, to the cup.

“Ah! How sweet coffee tastes, more delicious than a thousand kisses, milder than muscatel wine! Coffee, I have to have coffee, and, if someone wants to pamper me, ah, then bring me coffee as a gift!” sings Lieschen in one of Johann Sebastian Bach’s secular cantatas composed in the first half of the 18th century. Before her father, who wants to forbid her to drink it, the girl indulges in a veritable eulogy, a declaration of love and emancipation at the same time, but above all a perfect description of the taste of coffee, identified as ‘sweet’, ‘lovable’ and ‘mild’.

Because coffee reveals its most intrinsic sustainability in its taste and aroma, defined first and foremost in terms of sensory perception.

The best and most satisfying coffee contains less caffeine and fewer phenolic acids, which are responsible for the drink’s astringent and bitter taste. The amount of bitterness in coffee is the first indicator of its quality, which is closely linked to its sustainability, i.e. whether or not it is produced according to traditional and natural methods and in compliance with the strictest food safety regulations. Especially since coffee, a plant-based product that can only undergo simple processing such as roasting, cannot be supplemented with additives in any way.

Its truest identity therefore lies in its flavour.

The goodness of coffee also guarantees the product’s healthier sensory profile, since the high quality of the blend used corresponds to a lower amount of caffeine, in the region of up to 60%, as is the case with the prized Arabica variety (1.2-1.7%), compared to the Robusta variety (1.6-3.2%).

To this end, the IEI (Italian Espresso Institute) has objectively identified the characteristics of espresso coffee and its sensory sustainability: “A thick, finely textured cream, with a hazelnut colour tending towards dark brown, intensified by reddish brown highlights. The aroma should be intense and rich with notes of flowers, fruit, chocolate and toast. In the mouth, espresso should be full-bodied and velvety, just the right amount of bitter and never astringent.”

It was on the basis of this definition that the IEI drew up a detailed production specification for the certification of authentic Italian espresso, a specification to which Caffè Milani strictly adheres.

Taste for Nutritional Properties

For Caffè Milani, the focus on nutritional sustainability means taking care of consumers who choose its brand every day. Good coffee is a source of well-being, as well as a pleasure for the senses. And Caffè Milani has known this for 85 years.

Appreciating coffee also means knowing its nutritional characteristics so that our consumption habits can define a lifestyle of individual well-being and balance with the environment around us.

Analysed from a nutritional standpoint, coffee is a drink with very strong stimulating properties due to the presence of caffeine, which, in order to have beneficial effects on the body, must not exceed an average of 400 milligrams per day (a cup of espresso can contain 50 to 70 mg, a cup of mocha up to 120 mg), subject to individual and gender differences and the established habits of each individual.

Caffeine, taken in the right amount, has a tonic and energising effect, can facilitate digestion at the end of a meal, stimulate the metabolism to reduce fat and induce a sense of fullness. Moreover, caffeic acid, of which coffee is the main source, has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which have been the subject of numerous scientific investigations.

Excessive caffeine, on the other hand, can produce discomfort such as heartburn and hyperacidity, hypertension, insomnia, and, especially for women, reduced absorption of iron from food.

However, also from the standpoint of nutrition and effects on the body, it is the quality of the coffee you drink that makes all the difference, both in terms of the choice and origin of the raw material and of expertise in its processing.

Proper roasting aims to produce the Maillard reaction in coffee, giving the bean its characteristic brown colour and aromas without ‘burning’ it, which could have negative consequences for its taste and health.

Taste for Innovation

For Caffè Milani, innovation means updating and improving the experience of its production and consumption with an awareness that ‘coffee time’ is an indispensable and irreplaceable moment in our daily lives.

Italy is the home of the moka pot and espresso coffee, two coffee extraction methods that represent our ‘made in Italy’ on an international level: the much-loved coffee maker was invented in 1933 by Alfonso Bialetti, while the espresso machine was perfected in 1938 by Achille Gaggia, based on an invention by Angelo Moriondo from Turin in 1884.

Italy is the coffee industry.

Italian creativity and its ability to imagine and produce solutions for coffee preparation has left an indelible mark on the history of this drink, which over time has become an indispensable habit and social ritual for more than 90% of Italians, who treat themselves to at least one cup every day.

After all, since its inception, coffee has always been synonymous with social, cultural and economic innovation. The opening of the first coffee shops, along with the intoxicating aromas they brought to the city, also marked the emergence of comfortable places for meeting and conversation between different social classes, all thanks to a drink that could break down boundaries and become an opportunity for exchange and dialogue.

All thanks to a drink that could break down boundaries and become an opportunity for exchange and dialogue.

Today, Caffè Milani’s innovation is geared towards the adoption of increasingly high-performance technologies, material and resource savings, and research into eco-friendly packaging and the circular economy of waste. However, it also retains a fascinating flair for proposing and perfecting ‘alternative’ coffee extraction techniques, often imported from abroad, such as Filter Coffee, based on an infusion system, or the impressive Syphon methodalso based on infusion, or Cold drip, based on cold extraction through percolation, or even the French Press ,, the traditional transalpine plunger coffee maker. A wide-ranging selection of drink preparation techniques accompanies the constant search for increasingly certified crops to promote the production, consumption and culture of high-quality coffee.

Taste for Work and Training

At Caffè Milani, respect for work is accompanied by continuous training processes carried out within the academy to further qualify professional baristas. Making coffee well is crucial to appreciating its quality and its sensory and nutritional properties.

A Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) no. 8 of the UN’s 2030 Agenda, the international commitment charter for sustainable development, aims to promote sustainable labour growth, while respecting human rights. There are around 120 million people worldwide who make their living from coffee production, in more than 80 different countries, often in contexts where their rights are in jeopardy.

In Italy, too, the coffee and foodservice industry plays an important role in terms of employment and wealth generation. Despite this, adequate recognition and professional training of all actors in the supply chain is still an unresolved issue, especially in the final stages, in which accompanying the product to the final consumer becomes a crucial step in order to truly appreciate its value, quality and subtleties of flavour.

This is why the Caffè&Caffè stores opened by Caffè Milani are spaces designed to allow people to savour and discover the universe of this beverage, and, at the same time, as an opportunity to foster the entrepreneurial, innovative mindset and passion of young people in particular, resulting in an increasingly qualified and responsible business. In this respect, the figure of the Brand Ambassador is central, acting as an authoritative point of reference in structuring the entire range of establishments.

Expertise and high-quality products, hallmarks of Caffè Milani’s identity, go hand in hand with an equally crucial focus on training industry professionals. This is the basis for Altascuola Coffee Training, the theoretical and practical training project focused on the professional training of HoReCa workers, developed in collaboration with the International Institute of Coffee Tasters (IIAC) and the Italian Espresso Institute (IEI), which operates one of its four branches nationwide in the Caffè Milani plant in Lipomo, employing outstanding trainers.

With a view to continuous training and updating based on learning by doing, Caffè Milani has initiated several collaborations with Confcommercio Como and Lecco and with ENAIP Lombardia, an association operating in the field of education, vocational training and active employment policies. To celebrate the company’s 85th anniversary, a recipe book was created using Caffè Milani blends and single-origin coffees as the main ingredients, developed around the sustainable principles no waste, km 0 products and enhancement of the local production network.

Finally, collaboration with the area’s hotel schools and CFPs (Vocational Training Centres) has resulted in workshop activities held in the large, well-equipped Altascuola Coffee Training room and in the classrooms of the various schools.

As outlined in SDG 4 of the Paris Agenda, high-quality education and training are crucial for creating and improving the living conditions of people, communities and societies, including in initiatives that combine basic education and vocational training.

Taste for the Circular Economy

For Caffè Milani, the circular economy signifies the realisation that there is no waste in coffee processing, but only resources and secondary raw materials that increase its value.

Applying the principles of the circular economy to the coffee supply chain means learning to value all production waste products as resources and secondary raw materials.

With an estimated production in Italy of almost 300,000 tonnes of ‘outside the home’ coffee grounds, produced by the foodservice sector, to which we must add that of ‘at home’ consumption, the recovery and reuse of all forms of waste is clearly an interesting prospect, studied in recent years by extensive research and experimentation.

Today, coffee grounds can be used as a natural fertiliser, as a secondary raw material for biofuels, as a heavy metal absorbent in wastewater treatment and as a perfect substrate for growing mushrooms without consuming soil. There are also projects to transform coffee grounds into a biodegradable biopolymer with which to create furniture and design objects.

Even at the start of its transformation process, coffee can prove to be a source of secondary raw material thanks to the recovery and reuse of silverskin, the silvery film that coats the beans and is released after roasting. This particular industrial waste can be used for the production of paper and cosmetics, according to research conducted jointly by the CNR Institute of Molecular Science and Technologies, the University of Milan and Eurac Research.

Carefully considering all innovation and research possibilities in the area of the circular economy of coffee waste, Caffè Milani is committed to achieving maximum reduction of processing waste and proper management and disposal of company waste.

Jute, a natural material used to manufacture the 60 kg sacks in which green coffee travels to the company’s factory, deserves a separate mention. Once they have fulfilled their use as packaging, the sacks, with their beautiful, vibrant colours and designs from the countries of origin, are given a second life as upholstery fabric for sofas, armchairs and ottomans, or, together with waste from the reels, are used as material for making eco-fashion accessories such as bags, clutch bags and backpacks. This is all thanks to the creativity and skill of the young people of In-Presa, an organisation in Carate Brianza – with which Caffè Milani has been collaborating for years – that deals with vocational training, job placement, orientation, school support and group activities for young people of compulsory education age.

As outlined in SDG 12 on responsible production and consumption, sustainable development aims to “do more and better with less” by reducing resource use, degradation and pollution throughout the production cycle, thereby improving everyone’s quality of life. And Caffè Milani works daily to translate this principle into concrete reality.

Taste for Community

Caffè Milani has brought the world of coffee to its homeland A local focus has always been central to the identity of the company, which supports local socio-cultural initiatives. Because a good coffee also smells of solidarity.

“To those who do not just drink a coffee quickly, but take their time to taste it. To them we dedicate our labours and with them we share our secrets and our passion.” With these words, Pierluigi Milani, chairman of Caffè Milani, renews his daily invitation to taste a good Italian coffee. This invitation dates back to 1937, when Celestino Milani’s workshop was established in the historic centre of Como, a stone’s throw from the lake.

Since that day, Caffè Milani has embodied the excellence of its homeland. Now that its coffee is known worldwide and has made its way to China and Japan, the company’s ties to its land and community have remained unchanged.

Caffè Milani has brought the world of coffee to its homeland. It has aimed to illustrate the whole world that lies behind the beans ground to produce this coffee, made up of places, stories, people and destinies.

The company headquarters, which has a building entirely dedicated to the ‘Esposizione Caffè Milani’, open to visits from schoolchildren and all enthusiasts, testifies to a relationship of exchange seen as necessary in order to create value for the entire community.

Caffè Milani has initiated numerous collaborations to support the local area, with the Como Social Theatre, in the cultural field, with the Canturino Cycling Club and Comense Fencing Club, in sports, with the province’s hotel schools, in the training sphere, and with social cooperatives in the field of training and inclusion.