From its humble beginnings as part of the coffee plant, coffee beans take a long and fascinating journey before they are ready for us to enjoy.
From Coffee Plant To Your Caffeine Hit
It is no secret that Australians love their coffee. According to one study, in 2017 Aussies consumed 1.91 kilograms of coffee on average per person. The global phenomenon of the coffee plant is enjoyed across the world. Interestingly, around 70-80% of the global coffee export is farmed by 25 million smallholders. As you are about to see, these farmers are responsible for some of the most important steps in creating coffee.
One common misconception to clear up is that coffee beans are not actually beans, they are seeds. Most often, when planting the seeds, it is done in nurseries, allowing for control of the levels of sunlight and water they receive. Once strong enough they will be transferred to a place where they can live permanently.
Once the coffee bean starts bearing fruit (coffee cherries) harvesting can begin. The two most common methods of harvesting are strip (machine) harvesting and selective (hand) harvesting. Choosing what age to harvest the cherries will have an impact on the flavour of the coffee.
Once the harvesting is complete, the processing can begin. The processing method is long and very technical. The two main methods for processing cherries are the wet method and the dry method. However, if using the wet method, you still need to dry the beans afterwards. The processing is a crucial stage in the process of turning a coffee plant into coffee. This stage will also impact the taste of the final product.
The process of milling involves multiple steps. First, the husks of the cherries need to be removed. Second, the cherries need to be polished properly. Third, the remaining beans are graded and sorted.
Once milling is finished, the final product is little green beans (green coffee). These beans are then sent to their next destination.
The tasting process involved tasters (cuppers) testing all aspects of the beans. First, the visual aesthetic of the bean is analysed, and then the beans are roasted so the cupper can experience the aromatics, next the cupper will taste the quality of the coffee.
The green beans are sent to a roastery where they can be transformed into the magical coffee beans we all know and love.
Once the beans are roasted from green to brown, the beans will be ground. The aim of this step is to squeeze the most flavour out of the beans for your coffee brew.
The step we have all been waiting for! Brewing is the final and perhaps most enjoyable part of the whole process. Brewing is such a personal part of the process. There are countless ways to brew coffee and we think there is no wrong way to do it.
If next time you are enjoying a blissful cup of coffee, you think you might want to grow your very own coffee plant to make some coffee yourself but think the task is too difficult, why not try out some easy to grow edible flowers first?
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If you’re on the hunt for a nature friendly weed killer, or simply want to know more about eliminating weeds safely – check out other tips and tricks in our online advice forum, or contact us for any further queries.