The coffee bean refers to the seed of the plant of coffee that is used to make coffee. It is usually inside the purple or red fruit and is typically referred to as the cherry. The fruit of coffee just like other fruits is called the stone fruit.
The coffee bean is known as “bean” since they look like the actual bean. They usually contain two seeds in a berry with the flat sides facing each other.
However, we have the peaberries that contain only one seed inside. This type of berries constitutes a minuscule percentage. There are different types of coffee.
Two types of coffee are used for economic purposes. The two are Robusta and Coffee. 20 percent of the coffee that is produced in the world is Robusta while the rest 80 percent is Arabica. The difference between the two is the composition of caffeine. The Robusta variety contains between 1.7 and 4 percent caffeine while the Arabica variety contains 0.8 and 1.4 percent caffeine.
Coffee is one of the most consumed beverages in the world. This makes coffee a cash crop for both the import and export purposes. Coffee accounts for more than 50% of the foreign exchange earnings of the developing nations.
Processing of coffee
When the coffee berries are ripped, they are usually handpicked from the fields. Coffee is harvested through the selective handpicking whereby only the ripe seed is harvested. Certain populations in the world eat the fleshy part of the berry and extract the seeds.
The seeds are then processed further to make coffee. There is two type of coffee processing. The two are dry processing and wet processing.
The wet processing of coffee is mainly done in parts of Africa and Central America. The fleshy part of the berry is usually separated from the seeds. After the seeds have been separated, they are generally fermented by being soaked in water for between two and three days. The soaking process helps dissolve any stick residue or pulp that may be attached onto the seeds.
The dry processing, on the other hand, is simpler and cheaper. This method of coffee processing is used in some parts of Africa and Brazil. The dry processing method is used for the lower quality beans.
The foreign objects and twigs are separated from the berries and spread out to dry for between two and three weeks.