Stages of a Coffee Beans
Do you know what it takes for the coffee you may be drinking right now to get from the fields to your coffee pot? It’s actually pretty interesting, but not many people think about it. Coffee beans go through a number of stages from the moment they’re plucked to the moment you scoop those grounds in your coffee machine.
From the wild to your table, check out the stages of coffee bean harvesting and preparing, and perhaps you’ll appreciate that cup of coffee a little bit more. Here are the stages a single coffee bean goes through in its life – from the wild to your cup:
That’s right, your coffee goes through six stages of development before you brew it. The cherries are what the coffee “beans” are called when they hang on the tree. The bean or seed is nestled inside the husk, found inside the cherry. To get the coffee seed from the cherry, the coffee is put through a process known as de-pulping through the use of water and soaking.
However, naturals are classified as cherries that have undergone a drying process. After the drying process, the seed that comes out of the cherry is known as parchment, because its coloring is light tan, similar to a peanut. It is further dried, and any remaining husks are removed prior to packing and exporting to their destination
The green stage refers to how most coffee beans are received by manufacturers for the roasting process. This coffee cherry seed emits a vaguely fruit-like smell and is dense in nature. When green coffee is roasted and prepared for grinding, it develops a dark, rich, mahogany tone. Roasted coffee beans double in size while at the same time losing approximately 20% in weight.
After your coffee beans are roasted, they’re ready to be ground. Ground coffee is created through a variety of processes including grinding with a blade or burr grinder. At this stage, you can purchase your coffee pre-ground, or as whole coffee beans. Because the coffee bean has literally been smashed into numerous parts, hot water surrounding these exposed grounds of coffee is what gives your coffee the best flavor, aroma, and taste.
If you didn’t know all that before, perhaps now you have gained a bit more respect and appreciation for that cup of coffee you’re brewing right now.