10 Minutes With Mahniwati Ony


We learn the way Mahniwati’s model Kon Bayan Espresso helps to alter the Indonesian espresso trade in Lombok.


Photographs courtesy of Mahniwati Ony

Mahniwati Ony is a magnificence pageant contestant from Indonesia’s Lombok Island and the winner of the 2015 Miss Tourism title on the provincial stage. She has just lately turned her consideration to espresso manufacturing by beginning Kon Bayan Coffee. She found that lots of the Indigenous individuals in her group have been cash-poor regardless of their wealth of pure sources. 

To assist them, Mahniwati taught herself every step of the espresso worth chain. She now shares her data with farmers whereas selling espresso produced by native ladies. We spoke to Mahniwati about her journey from magnificence queen to espresso entrepreneur.


A clear glass jar of ground coffee being held in a woman's hand. The red label says Pawang Tenun single origin coffee blend and lists medium roast, with notes of brown sugar and spice and low acidity.
Kon Bayan Espresso is now being bought in native espresso outlets in Lombok, Gilis, and Kuta.

Barista Journal: What impressed you to create Kon Bayan Espresso?

Mahniwati Ony: Kon Bayan Espresso was created as an act of resistance to problem the accusation that girls are solely good for sure issues. It’s also a type of delight, honoring the Bayan Indigenous individuals and recognizing their laborious work in rising espresso beans that are sourced from North Lombok. The title Kon Bayan interprets to “of the bayan,“ and is meant to empower ladies who come from this area. It stands for power, resilience, and hope for a greater future.

A photo of Mahniwati of Kon Bayan Coffee beaming in front of a mountainous landscape. She wears colorful stripes in a wrap top and skirt, and has a thin headband holding back her long black hair.
A magnificence contestant turned entrepreneur, Mahniwati based Kon Bayan in honor of the Bayan Indigenous individuals of Indonesia.

How has your expertise as Miss Tourism of the West Nusa Tenggara province helped in launching and managing the enterprise?

My expertise as Miss Tourism of the West Nusa Tenggara province has given me beneficial perception and confidence to launch my very own enterprise. In 2017, I made a decision to start out my very own small enterprise regardless of preliminary opposition from household and friends. This solely made me extra decided to show that single ladies will be profitable of their pursuits. My journey thus far has been invaluable in serving to me handle an enterprise.

’Mom of Espresso’

Why did you select espresso as a approach to assist your group?

I selected to work with espresso as a approach to assist my group as a result of it’s an exercise that I take pleasure in, and it holds numerous cultural significance. In my indigenous tradition, there are ceremonies involving espresso that happen in particular areas known as inan kupi, that means “mom of espresso.“ Moreover, planting espresso timber can act as a type of conservation, since they require different bigger timber to supply safety from the solar. This makes them an essential a part of defending customary forests.

A woman in jeans and a button up shirt trains some younger women on coffee beans. The woman stands while the younger women sit on mats, wearing head scarves.
From improved agricultural practices to offering barista coaching, Mahniwati helps locals develop their expertise and produce a high quality product.

How have you ever been capable of assist native farmers by Kon Bayan Espresso?

Kon Bayan Espresso has helped native farmers by offering them with an academic course of on the right way to correctly take care of, harvest, and retailer espresso. This has enabled them to obtain truthful costs with out counting on middlemen and helped to enhance their financial circumstances. Now we have created processes and work contracts and centered on high quality, resulting in a constructive influence for the farmers.

How has Kon Bayan Espresso grown since its launch?

Our espresso was initially rejected by espresso outlets due to their choice for arabica over robusta. Nonetheless, we persevered and ultimately discovered a enterprise group that values native merchandise. We now have our espresso out there in native espresso outlets (in) Lombok, Gilis, and Kuta, and we’re working to increase our collaboration with farmers in Lombok to enhance the post-harvest course of and storage of espresso.

Mahniwati of Kon Bayan Coffee and two other women hold up a big pot filled with red coffee cherries.
Serving to feminine entrepreneurs is the guts of Kon Bayan Espresso’s mission.

Are there any specific challenges that girls entrepreneurs face when beginning a enterprise in Indonesia?

In Indonesia, there are challenges that feminine entrepreneurs face when beginning a enterprise, akin to societal strain to prioritize household over their profession. Individuals within the nation usually prioritize schooling and success but in addition count on ladies to serve their husbands and deal with their kids.

The Lombok Group

What sort of influence do you hope to see out of your firm’s work throughout the group?

We attempt to create constructive change inside our local people by providing financial development by elevated job alternatives, improved agricultural practices akin to using pure fertilizers, and offering instructional sources akin to barista coaching for the youthful era. We’re dedicated to creating an enduring distinction within the lives of our espresso farmers.

Mahniwati and a group of 13 kids and 2 other adults gather for a group photo. Some hold up large fruits, while some carry baskets with coffee cherries. Behind them is vibrant green tropical trees and foliage.
Educating the younger era is a vital a part of Mahniwati’s work—sharing her story, inspiring younger individuals to pursue their desires, and instructing them the worth of espresso manufacturing.

What has been the suggestions from native prospects and the overall espresso group in Indonesia and overseas?

Prospects from Lombok, Indonesia, and overseas have given constructive suggestions relating to Lombok espresso’s distinctive style. They’re additionally happy to know that their buy empowers native ladies and younger individuals, as they’re concerned within the processing of the espresso. There have even been prospects who purchased a lot espresso whereas on trip to Lombok that they requested it’s despatched overseas once they returned house. This has motivated us to additional our work with native farmers in producing high-quality espresso.

What’s your long-term imaginative and prescient for Kon Bayan Espresso?

Kon Bayan Espresso’s long-term imaginative and prescient is to supply bulk espresso from single origins with out utilizing plastic. We wish to deal with lowering single-use plastic waste and promote sustainability. Different objectives embrace opening jobs for ladies in our store and creating plantation tour packages with farmers to introduce espresso to vacationers.


Vasileia Fanarioti (she/her) is a senior on-line correspondent for Barista Magazine, and a contract copywriter and editor with a major focus on the coffee niche. She has additionally been a volunteer copywriter for the I’M NOT A BARISTA NPO, offering content material to assist educate individuals about baristas and their work. You’ll be able to observe her adventures at thewanderingbean.net.

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