Buying Coffee

Buying Coffee: Tips and Tricks

by Radhe Gupta

Before shipping the coffee beans, the green coffee merchant in Australia grades the beans. Graded green coffee beans might still have issues that aren’t considered when they are labelled as “Exceptional” or “Specialty”. While not life-threatening, these “defects” in the coffee diminish its potency. The appearance of green coffee beans in Australia may reveal a lot about a coffee’s processing circumstances. Although cupping is the only method to know whether there are any issues, comparing coffee beans is a useful predictive tool.

The green coffee beans in Australia have a comparable shape (as well as a similar colour) and are around the same size (17/18, 15/16, 13/14 etc.). This is due to the fact that roasting unevenly affects the look and flavour of the coffee. As a consequence, a cup of coffee brewed with smaller beans will have an inconsistent roasting pattern. Uneven colouration indicates drying issues, while uneven forms may suggest a mix of cultivars.

The manufacturer should segregate coffee lots according to the geographic region as well as coffee variety. Before combining the silos, these lots should be harvested, processed, and cupped individually.

Coffees made from washed Arabica beans should be uniform and vibrant. The colour of the coffee beans should be uniform and vibrant. If they do, it’s probable that they’ve been wrongly dried or processed. For speciality green coffee, processing is a must. The quality of the cup will suffer if the green coffee beans seem faded.

Inquire about the drying conditions for the coffee beans on the farm or plantation in question. This may be seen in the cup if they seem to have spent a large amount of time ensuring that they are drying the coffee correctly. When clothes aren’t dried properly, they’re frequently visible. Coffees that are dried too quickly in mechanical dryers turn out dull or discoloured. As a consequence of drying too rapidly, spreading too thinly on the patios, or not rotating as often as indicated, the coffee beans can become mottled (or Quakers when roasted). After drying on patios, some people propose drying coffee in mechanical dryers before bringing it back for the final drying. They think that this aids in the enhancement of colour. Some companies dry their coffee beans many times, allowing the beans to rest in silos between drying operations to stabilise the moisture level of the bean. Coffee beans will dry quicker on the exterior than on the inside. Thus this is critical. Make sure to inquire about the dryer’s temperature setting. Is it hotter than 42 degrees? As a consequence, you should anticipate a tasteless cup of coffee and an unsatisfactory rating.

Inquire about the coffee’s processing for any coffees in Australia. As soon as the green coffee beans are harvested, the estate should begin processing them. As soon as the coffee beans are picked, they begin to ferment, so you can count on a fermented cup. Is there a way to find out why and how the tanks are used? Do they remove the coffees that float to the top of the tanks during the fermenting process? Does density separate coffees before they are added to the tanks after pulping? Taking the time to improve the quality of their coffee will only be understood by farms that have made a major effort to do so. The brownish tinges on the green coffee beans might be caused by the coffee pulp in the tanks during processing. This is also a sign that the coffee cherries have been over-harvested.

It is common for natural (dry) processed coffees to be coated with brown silverskin that has adhered to the bean. Known as a “fox bean” in Brazil, this is not considered a flaw. If you can remove a section of the silver skin by rubbing on the black sorting mat, this kind of bean is not regarded as a fault by novice classifiers. A silver skin covers green (under-ripe) coffee beans that cannot be removed with simple rubbing. Fox beans may imply acidic, fruity, or Rio flavours in a washed coffee. This has to be tested in the cup, not just visually.

Are there pink spots on the coffee beans themselves or just within the cracks? The majority of people don’t consider this a flaw in various sectors. Because these beans are not part of the green coffee categorisation, they may be sold as speciality coffee to the customer. To establish the severity of the problem, these coffee beans should be separated and cupped.

Is the surface of the coffee beans white or faded? Insufficient drying or storing in humid circumstances is most likely to blame. A boring cup is what you’ll get. Coffees that haven’t been dried uniformly are also likely to have these white stains. Those areas of the bean with a yellowish tone are wetter than the rest. The oxidation, soil contact, or dirty water may also cause white or discoloured coffee beans.

Smell the green coffee beans before purchasing. Smoke and fermentation damage are more obvious at this stage than they are when the food is roasted.

Pick up the green coffee beans. We want to know what’s on their minds. Over-drying at a high temperature will result in brittle, glass-like results. In this case, mould development cannot be prevented. Thus they should be thrown away if they are still malleable.

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