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  1. #1
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    what is shelf life of roasted coffee beans?

    Ideally someone says it is two weeks (rule of 15!) and must be consumed within 2 weeks. And some others says that prior to the 6th week. Some says up to 3 month..... I am certain that as soon as the coffee is roasted, immediately it starts to lose the flavors little by little.... something is disappearing no matter what...

    but how much is acceptable? let's say that if the "something" gets lost about 10% (and 90% is still in the beans), is that still considered as fresh roasted beans? and how long does it take to lose 10%?

  2. #2
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    I bet the answer could be found in the Book of Roast!

  3. #3
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    I've had coffee that tasted fairly good up to about 4 weeks then it dropped off pretty fast and eventually I didn't finish it and put it in the jar for the wife (she is like Mikey, she'll drink anything). I've also had coffee that lost it's taste in less than 2 weeks. This makes me wonder if the age of the green bean has anything to do with how long it lasts after it's been roasted or is it more the quality of the bean itself?

    Does a green bean that's only a month old last longer than a green bean that is several months old after roasting?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duffyjr View Post
    I've had coffee that tasted fairly good up to about 4 weeks then it dropped off pretty fast and eventually I didn't finish it and put it in the jar for the wife (she is like Mikey, she'll drink anything). I've also had coffee that lost it's taste in less than 2 weeks. This makes me wonder if the age of the green bean has anything to do with how long it lasts after it's been roasted or is it more the quality of the bean itself?
    I am guessing that Light Roast self life would be much shorter than Darker Roast shelf life. As we all know, lighter roast coffee (given that it is from fresh green coffee and good one) has more flavors, deeper flavors and more defined flavors than darker ones. And as we roast darker, it loses more moisture and oil than lighter ones. So, I am "guessing" that Darker ones will last longer than lighter ones. (probably I need to do some more research on this subject!)

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duffyjr View Post
    Does a green bean that's only a month old last longer than a green bean that is several months old after roasting?
    Probably so. because when I sell my green beans, I MUST SHIP IT OUT from Guatemala to overseas BEFORE END OF SEPTEMBER. Guatemala harvest season is from November to April. and that year exportation limit is from November to end of September.

    So, why is end of September? if we ship out the coffee AFTER END OF SEPTEMBER, we consider that coffee as OLD HARVESTED COFFEE. And probably no one will buy that coffee because the green beans are already considered as OLD, losing the flavors.

    Couple of month ago, when I was in Guatemala, I did some experimental cupping test with new coffee of 2017 and old coffee from 2016. I believe that I posted here few month back with photos of green beans, cupping results...etc

    So, if you roast old beans, I am sure that it will go bad much faster than new beans.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Peaberry View Post
    I bet the answer could be found in the Book of Roast!
    Probably it will, but it would be very subjective and not thorough....

  7. #7
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    Assuming we are talking whole bean roasted coffee... I find coffee is best within 2 weeks of roast. After 4-6 weeks it starts losing flavors... It all depends on the coffee, storage and roast level.

    I find that dark roasted coffees go bad quicker... I assume its due to the fact the oil is oxidizing faster since its on the surface of the bean. I've never given much though or compared a City/City+ vs. Full City roast.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Musicphan View Post
    I find that dark roasted coffees go bad quicker... I assume its due to the fact the oil is oxidizing faster since its on the surface of the bean. I've never given much though or compared a City/City+ vs. Full City roast.
    I read from some article that one of the reasons that Starbucks roast their coffee so dark is to have them last longer, longer shelf life to extend their profit margin. What Musicphan said is an interesting point about the oil (I guess the surface oil in dark roast) oxidizing faster than the oil inside of the beans in which we all should investigate bit more. I will also do some looking....

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ensoluna View Post
    I read from some article that one of the reasons that Starbucks roast their coffee so dark is to have them last longer, longer shelf life to extend their profit margin. What Musicphan said is an interesting point about the oil (I guess the surface oil in dark roast) oxidizing faster than the oil inside of the beans in which we all should investigate bit more. I will also do some looking....
    There are likely 2 main reasons Charbux has a 'method to the madness'... Darker roasted coffees can pull through heavy flavorings/sugar/large quantities of milk, meaning less can be used compared to much lighter roasts. Also, when roasting inferior coffees darker roasts are usually desired to cover up any off notes with the roast notes. All comes down to profit...

    I agree with Musicphan as darker roasts indeed lose their flavor/go rancid quicker. The surface oils lead to faster deterioration. I find that in home roasting if I want to 'age the coffee' a bit faster as in I'm running low and want to minimize the amount of time to consume with decent flavor development I can roast a coffee a bit darker than normal and it will mellow out a few days quicker.
    I'm a legend among my own kind... you my friend are just a legend in your own mind. Later!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadow745 View Post
    when roasting inferior coffees darker roasts are usually desired to cover up any off notes with the roast notes. All comes down to profit...
    to add to this comment, I can also add that perhaps since Starbucks will have a lot of "expired old green beans" in their warehouse (since they buy and consume millions and millions pounds of coffee, some (actually a lot) might go over 15 month period), roasting darker will help them to use up the old green beans.. again for more profit.

 

 
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