The NCA Scientific Advisory Group

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Caffeiene chemical structure

Caffeine crystal viewed from an electron microscope

Science Leadership Council

What Is SLC?

The NCA Science Leadership Council (SLC) is a preeminent authority on coffee science and caffeine — one of only a few highly respected organizations worldwide devoted to this specialized field.

SLC members are among the industry’s leading experts on the science of coffee and health, holding decades of experience in a wide spectrum of disciplines. Their respective areas of expertise include:
  • Chemistry
  • Microbiology / Food Safety
  • Quality Assurance / Quality Control
  • Toxicology
  • Biochemistry
  • Food Science & Technology
  • Human Nutrition
  • Industrial Hygiene

As the core of the NCA Scientific Affairs Program, the council’s primary responsibilities include:

  • Follow and analyze emerging scientific developments
  • Alert NCA leadership to any potential consequences for the coffee industry
  • Review new research on coffee, health, and coffee's constituent compounds, including caffeine
  • Advise on regulatory challenges that hinge on their expertise

SLC Members

Council members are prominent professionals from NCA member organizations, focused on:

  • Research & Development
  • Quality Control
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Food Safety

The council also includes two expert consulting advisors: a highly experienced industry toxicologist and a medical doctor and professor of epidemiology.

Not only are SLC members the minds driving the NCA’s scientific affairs program, but they’re also the NCA’s eyes and ears into the international scientific community. The breadth and depth of their experience, professional standing, and personal connections with researchers and institutions across the globe make their purview comprehensive and their contributions unmatched.

SLC members review the latest research, analyses, and opinions from institutions across the world on coffee science & health. They rely on resources including their professional networks, the council’s aggregated institutional memory, and the comprehensive NCA-SLC Scientific Database.

The database incorporates input from SLC members, making it an unparalleled resource that supports the NCA Scientific Affairs program and the resulting NCA member benefits.

Accuracy & Advocacy

SLC’s contributions are critical to the coffee industry’s bottom line. Key issues include food safety, environmental exposures, and ingredient and nutritional information. The NCA relies on SLC’s expertise when responding to regulations and reports emerging from a variety of government policy and authoritative agencies, such as:

  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
  • Dietary Guidelines for Americans Committee (DGAC)
  • The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)
  • Codex Alimentarius (CODEX), the United Nations’ and World Health Organization’s food safety organization

How to Join

Membership to the Science Leadership Council is open to NCA member companies in good standing. A company joining the SLC must have a full-time employee of the company having a scientific, technical background or significant work experience who can serve as a volunteer representative on the committee. That representative will actively contribute to the committee's work and discussions. Member companies of the SLC must also make a separate financial contribution following the SLC dues schedule, which is in addition to the NCA general membership dues contribution. All funds collected by the committee’s dues schedule go to support the NCA’s scientific affairs program. For more information on joining, please contact Dr. Mark Corey, NCA Director of Scientific & Regulatory Affairs.. At NCA, we serve coffee.