What it is
E.S.E. (acronym for Easy Serving Espresso) is a technology that simplifies the process of making a great cup of coffee and reduces it to a few, easy steps thanks to the use of servings (individually packaged single-servings containing 7 grams of ground coffee sealed between two thin layers of filter paper).
This international industrial standard (the only “open” system in the paper pod espresso coffee preparation sector) is in fact based on espresso machines and servings that are fully compatible with each other regardless of brand name, model or price range.
Freedom of choice and top quality are guaranteed simply by matching two E.S.E. trademarks: one found on the espresso machine and the other on the servings.
The standardization of the servings and machines technical and geometrical parameters effectively allowed to eliminate variables such as: the equipment difficulty of use, the possibility of choosing the wrong blend, product waste, incorrect dosing and pressing; this effectively guarantees espresso of constantly good quality.
The implementation of the standard E.S.E. allows to satisfy:
- the industry’s need for a single reference standard and new market opportunities;
- the consumers’ demand for transparency and freedom to choose from a wide range of brands, models and price levels.
The Easy Serving Espresso trademark found on espresso machines and packaged pods allow the consumers (and retailers) to verify they are compatible and hence be sure of their choice.
This is one of the reasons why a great number of coffee roasters, espresso machine and pod manufacturers have decided to focus on the paper coffee servings market sector. It is a market with huge potential for development, which is attracting the attention of an ever-increasing number of operators world-wide.
How it works
The E.S.E. espresso machine is characterized by an extraction chamber specifically designed and shaped to optimize the quality of in-cup espresso and perfectly fit the pod. The main technical parameters of the machines, such as temperature and water pressure have been defined to ensure the consistently good quality of the espresso. These parameters are checked before any espresso machine prototype is granted permission to be marketed under the E.S.E. trademark. The same parameters are checked again once the model is placed into full scale production. All this serves to ensure constant quality.
The E.S.E. serving is a pre-measured amount of coffee – enough to yield a perfect single serving – that has been roasted, ground, weighed, tamped and sealed within two sheets of food-grade filter paper. The amount of coffee, grind size, and tamping force are defined to obtain the best possible cup of espresso. The technical characteristics of E.S.E. servings make them fit perfectly within the extraction chamber of E.S.E. espresso machines.
The Consortium made several investments to add value to the E.S.E. trademark and implemented several E.S.E. certification enhancements throughout its entire value chain. The new E.S.E. Standard parameters now foresee:
- a narrower dimensional parameters acceptance range, which spans: 43,5 to 44.5 mm in diameter; 9,1 to 10,6 mm in thickness;
- 4 espresso coffee categories (espresso, short, long and extra-long) to accompany the E.S.E. logo and better define the beverage type, should the manufacturer choose to do so;
- eliminating “dual-validity” issues by prototyping 2 E.S.E. pods made of silicone (one small, one larger, with 55 and 65 shore hardness) that standardize and enhance the accuracy of conformance tests.
Certification of Compostability
The valorisation plan final phase foresaw obtaining a compostability certification for Standard E.S.E. products.
In 2012, after almost three years of preliminary disintegration, biodegradability, ring tests and in-depth studies of the prevailing regulations on the disposal of packaging, the Consortium is finally able to approach the true and proper compostability certification program.
In collaboration with the Certiquality, the consortium was able to “perfect a voluntary certification scheme” by which to introduce a new category named “compostable manufactured products” to certify items such as E.S.E. paper pods, which are currently not specifically covered by the reference regulation.
This will not change any of the provisions set forth in the reference waste disposal regulation (UNI EN 13432:2002), but will better define the parameters relative to polyethylene content.
The E.S.E. “open” system is the only one by which consumers can freely choose different brands of compatible single serving espresso pods and espresso machines. The freedom of choosing between different brands also lends more flexibility to the offer.
The system is characterized by ease of use, thanks to the practical pre-measured single-serving coffee pods (no ground coffee dust or waste) and the user-friendly functionality of compatible espresso machines.
By eliminating any chance of wasting coffee, standard E.S.E. pods cost less to use than “regularly packaged” mocha or ground espresso coffee.
Last but not least, the materials used to make “paper coffee pod products” means they are “eco-sustainable by nature”. This will soon be confirmed by the pending certification of compostability.
The standard E.S.E. truly completes the wide range of offerings in today’s espresso coffee preparation systems market, while giving consumers the freedom of choosing which option best suits their taste and lifestyle: an open system keenly attuned to eco-sustainability expectations or a closed system that guarantees taste and quality.