Coffee Harvesting and Processing Methods

by Jeanette Kierstead

Coffee is a drink enjoyed by many people in developed nations throughout North America and Europe.

And, it is often easy to enjoy something so much and never give it a second thought as to where it comes from. Well, it's time that ends!

Today let's take a look at traditional coffee harvesting and processing methods. You might be surprised as to how your coffee is made.

The Coffee Plant (Coffee Arabica)

The coffee plant, better known as 'Coffee Arabica' is a little shrub that likes to grow in warm climates.

This is the reason why many coffee plantations are found throughout South America, Africa, and Eastern Asia (such as Indonesia).

Coffea Arabica
Coffea Arabica

The coffee plant itself can grow up to three feet wide and six feet tall. When the plant matures it will begin to flower, and it gives off a sweet jasmine like scent.

After the flower has been pollinated and the fruit begins to form, it becomes known as the coffee cherry. The coffee cherry starts green then fades to yellow, and then turns a rich orange, and finally becoming a deep, dark red. This color change occurs during the hot season, depending on the country it is growing. It's at this moment that the coffee is ready for harvest.

1. The Coffee Plant Is a Tropical Evergreen That Grows up to 20 Feet Tall

Coffee is a popular drink that is enjoyed by people all around the world. Coffee is made from the beans of the coffee plant, which is a tropical evergreen that grows up to 20 feet tall. The coffee plant produces beans that are used to make coffee. Coffee is a drink that can be enjoyed hot or cold, depending on your preference.

There are many different types of coffee available, including regular, decaf, and flavored coffees. There are also many ways to prepare coffee, so you can enjoy it the way you like best. Whether you like your coffee black or with cream and sugar, there is a type of coffee that is perfect for you.

Coffee is a great way to start your day, and it can also be enjoyed in the evening. Coffee is a caffeine-rich drink, so it can help you stay alert and focused. Coffee is also a great source of antioxidants, which can help protect your body from harmful toxins.

2. Produces Red Cherries That Contain Two Beans, Used to Make Coffee

The coffee plant produces red cherries that contain two seeds, or beans, which are used to make coffee. The two seeds are what give coffee its unique flavor and aroma. The first seed is the bean that is roasted and ground to make coffee. The second seed is the bean that is used to make espresso. Espresso is made by brewing a small amount of coffee with a high concentration of water and pressure. This produces a thick and rich beverage with a bold flavor.

3. Native to Africa Anda Can Be Found in Countries Like Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania

The coffee plant is native to Africa and can be found in countries like Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania. The coffee tree grows best in rich, volcanic soil and at high altitudes. The coffee bean is the seed of the coffee fruit and is used to make coffee. Coffee is a popular beverage around the world and is enjoyed by people of all ages. There are many different types of coffee available, including espresso, cappuccino, and latte. Coffee can be brewed using a variety of methods, including drip brewing, French press, and vacuum brewing. Coffee is also available in instant form for those who want to enjoy it on the go. Whether you're a coffee lover or not, there's no denying that it's a fascinating plant with a rich history.

4. Coffee Beans Are Roasted to Create Different Flavors of Coffee

There are many different flavors of coffee that can be enjoyed. This is because the coffee beans are roasted to create different flavors. The most common flavors of coffee are light, medium, and dark roasts.

Light roasts have a mild flavor and are often used for brewed coffee. Medium roasts have a more pronounced flavor and are sometimes used for espresso. Dark roasts have a richer flavor and are often used for French press or Turkish coffee.

The type of roast that is used affects the flavor of the coffee. For example, light roasts often have a fruity flavor, while dark roasts have a chocolatey or smoky flavor. The level of roast also affects the caffeine content of the coffee. Light roasts have the least caffeine, while dark roasts have the most.

There are many different flavors of coffee to enjoy, and each one is unique. Whether you like light, medium, or dark roasts, there is a flavor out there for you. Try out different roasts and find the one that you like the best. You may be surprised at how much variety there is in coffee flavors!

5. Coffee Has Many Health Benefits and Can Help Improve Mental Clarity and Focus

It's no secret that coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world - and for good reason. Coffee has many health benefits, including improving mental clarity and focus. Coffee is a rich source of antioxidants, which help protect the body against damage caused by free radicals. These antioxidants can scavenge harmful toxins and byproducts that can damage cells, leading to inflammation.

One study showed that drinking coffee was linked to a reduced risk of death from all causes, including heart disease, stroke, and cancer. Another study found that coffee drinkers had a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or dementia.

Coffee also contains caffeine, which has been shown to improve mental clarity and focus. Caffeine blocks the effects of adenosine, a neurotransmitter that builds up during extended mental activity and makes you feel tired. It also stimulates the release of adrenaline and dopamine, which improve energy and mood.

So if you're looking for a drink that can improve your mental clarity and focus, coffee is a great choice. But be sure to avoid adding too much sugar or cream, as these can offset any health benefits. Instead, enjoy your coffee black or with a little honey or stevia for sweetness.

How is Coffee Harvested?

How is Coffee Harvested?
How is Coffee Harvested?

When the ripe coffee cherries are firm and red, the traditional method to pick them is done by hand.

This still occurs in many regions of the world, however the modern methods use a machine which strips both ripe and unripened coffee cherries from the tree.

The traditional method is the preferred way of picking coffee cherries since there will be a higher yield of coffee from the crop.

Picking Coffee Cherries
Picking Coffee Cherries

However, picture yourself beneath the sweltering heat, picking all the little coffee cherries one by one.

Since most flowering fruits are pollinated at different times of the blossoming season, ripening occurs at different times.

This makes picking coffee cherries by hand the ideal method.

Want to give it a try?

INTERESTING FACT: Harvesting coffee in Brazil will use machinery which strips the coffee bean from the plant when about 75% of the cherries are ripe.

This seems to be the more cost effective method for harvesting coffee cherries rather than hiring laborers to pick them by hand.

Coffee Harvesting Machine
Coffee Harvesting Machine

While more coffee can be collected using the traditional method, it comes at a cost:

  • A large, rural work force is required to pick a coffee cherry crop. Usually, this is done at minimal pay.
  • Rising wages makes harvesting by hand less attractive.
  • More and more youth are moving to urban centres to find work, leaving behind few workers willing to pick coffee plants.

Often, the method of harvesting coffee plants will be determined by the rural workers available in the region.

Coffee Harvesting Methods

There are three main methods of harvesting coffee:

Strip picking

In this method, all the cherries are stripped off the branch at once. This is typically used for large plantations where machines can be used to do the harvesting.

Selectively Picking

Individual cherries are hand-picked one by one. This is often used in smaller plantations or estates where the coffee is grown on a terrace.

Machine Picking

A machine is used to strip the cherries off the branches. This is usually done when there is a high yield of cherries and it is not possible to pick them all by hand.

Top 5 Coffee Processing Methods

How coffee is processed will have a direct effect on the flavor and quality of the coffee. There are a few different methods that are used to create the range of flavors available today.

Let's take a look at five coffee processing methods.

Wet Coffee Processing Method

The wet coffee processing method is the most common method used to process coffee beans. The coffee cherries are first harvested and then sorted by color. The green coffee beans are then removed from the red coffee cherries. The red coffee cherries are then washed and the pulp is removed. The coffee beans are then dried.

The wet coffee processing method has several benefits. First, the coffee beans are less likely to be damaged during the harvesting and sorting process. Second, the wet coffee processing method is more efficient than the dry coffee processing method. Third, the wet coffee processing method produces a higher quality product. Fourth, the wet coffee processing method results in a lower yield than the dry coffee processing method. Finally, the wet coffee processing method is more expensive than the dry coffee processing method.

Despite its drawbacks, the wet coffee processing method is still the most popular way to process coffee beans. It produces a high quality product that is loved by consumers all over the world.

Dry Coffee Processing Method

The dry coffee processing method is a process that is used to remove the coffee cherry from the coffee bean. The coffee cherry is dried and then removed from the coffee bean. This process is used to produce green coffee beans. This process is used to produce specialty coffees. This process is used to produce roasted coffee beans. This process is used to produce instant coffee. The dry processing method is a process that has been used for many years. The dry processing method produces a high quality cup of coffee. The dry processing method is a process that is used by many small farmers. The dry processing method is a process that requires a lot of labor. The dry processing method produces a very clean cup of coffee. It is a process that is used in many different countries. The method is a process that has been perfected over many years. The process is used by many of the top coffee roasters in the world.

Processing Coffee the Natural Way

The natural methods is the simplest method for processing coffee. However, this is not easy to do.

After the coffee cherries have been harvested, they must be dried. The cherries will be placed on mats to be set out in the sun.

Indonesian Coffee Farmer Harvests Civet Cat Poop Coffee
Indonesian Coffee Farmer Harvests Civet Cat Poop Coffee

For the best results, the cherries will be hand selected and separated based on their ripeness. Doing this allows a consistent flavor when the coffee cherries are fully dried.

The mats used to dry the coffee cherries allow for the circulation of air under and around the cherries. The entire drying process can take anywhere between 23 to 36 days.

What's happening the the coffee cherries while they dry?

During the drying period, the sugars and flavours from the plump fruit will begin to absorb into the bean. This is how you can control the variations of bodies and refined flavours.

Drying Coffee Beans
Drying Coffee Beans

Processing Coffee the Washed Way

The traditional full wash process puts the coffee cherry through 5 to 7 days of enzymatic fermentation in water. This allows the pulpy fruit surrounding the bean to soften and separate.

The flavors created using this process enhances acidity and the finer, floral aromatics of the coffee bean.

This traditional coffee processing method has recently had some modernized additions. Friction washing is an added step which removes the sticky pulp which further enhances the flavor.

After this step, the beans may be soaked in a citrus, apricot or apple infused water to alter the flavour and modify the acidity.

Coffee Bean Washing
Coffee Bean Washing

Processing Coffee the Semi-Washed Way

If you're looking for a coffee that's got a little more complexity and flavor than your average cup, then you may want to try processing your coffee beans in the semi-washed way. This process gives the beans a unique flavor profile that's sure to please any coffee lover.

So what is the semi-washed way, exactly? It's a process where the skin of the bean is removed partially, which leaves some of the coffee oils and flavor on the bean. This results in a cup of coffee that has a richer taste and more depth of flavor than regular roasted coffee.

If you're interested in giving this method a try, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. First, you'll need to find a coffee bean that's been specifically processed for this method. You can usually find these beans at specialty coffee shops or online.

Second, you'll need to make sure that you have the right equipment. In order to process your beans in the semi-washed way, you'll need a coffee grinder, a scale, and a burr mill. You can buy all of these items online or at your local hardware store.

Once you have the necessary equipment, it's time to get started! First, weigh out your desired amount of coffee beans. Then, grind them up using your coffee grinder. Once they're ground up, place them in your burr mill and start turning the crank. Be careful not to over-grind the beans, or they'll start to taste bitter.

Once your beans have been ground, it's time to brew them! There are a few different ways to do this, so you can choose the method that best suits your needs. You can use a French press, an espresso machine, or even a drip coffee maker. The choice is yours!

Processing Coffee The Honey Way

The coffee cherry will be pulped (removal of the outer fruit) then spread out to dry without washing. Often, some of the pulp will remain on the bean. This honey process is both demanding and difficult to do.

After the beans have been separated, they are spread thinly on drying beds and must be turned hourly during the 10 to 15 days for the bean to become stable.

Honey Process With Coffee
Honey Process With Coffee

If the honey process can be achieved properly, the result is a fine coffee with robust body and fruity sweetness.
Honey Process With Coffee

Brazil and other places in Central America have refined the honey process to create a wide range of flavours from white, yellow, red and black coffee cherries.

There flavors are defined by the amount of flesh remaining after pulping and the weather throughout the drying process.

You've just learned about some of the traditional and modern methods for harvesting and processing. However, your favorite drink is not yet ready to be crushed to smithereens and sipped in a cup.

The next step in the making of coffee comes roasting.

Conclusion for Coffee Harvesting and Processing Methods

There are several coffee harvesting and processing methods used worldwide. The most common method is the wet process, which involves washing the coffee cherries with water to remove the pulp. The coffee beans are then dried in the sun or in mechanical dryers. Another common method is the dry process, which involves drying the coffee cherries without removing the pulp. The coffee beans are then roasted to produce coffee. This method is used mainly in Brazil and Ethiopia. Finally, there is the natural process, which involves leaving the coffee cherries on the tree to dry naturally. This process takes a long time and results in lower-quality coffee beans. This process is used mainly in Ethiopia and Tanzania.

About Jeanette Kierstead

Jeanette has been testing and reviewing kitchen appliances for over six years now, so she knows her stuff when it comes to finding the best ones. In her spare time, she loves nothing more than baking cakes and cookies – especially if she can do so with one of her favorite stand mixers! When she's not in the kitchen, Jeanette is usually looking after everything homes-related; from garden tools to smart home products.

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