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Coffee Plants for the Future: Update on the World Coffee Research Breeding Program

By Emma Sage, SCAA In late January of this year, World Coffee Research (WCR) gathered a group of coffee breeders and other interested parties to discuss the future of coffee cultivars in Central America. Representatives from WCR, SCAA, Anacafé, Promecafé, AGRITECH NST, CATIE, USAID, and CIRAD discussed the results of the WCR genetic diversity study, …

Ask Emma: What is hydrolysis?

Hi Emma, I keep hearing about this “hydrolysis” thing that happens during brewing, what is it? Can you explain the science behind hydrolysis? How is it different than extraction? Thanks, Brewed and confused in Baltimore *** Dear brewed and confused, I feel your pain! Brewing is one of the most complex yet under-researched topics in …

Decaffeination Processes: How do they make decaf coffee when the caffeine is in the bean?

Mental Floss recently posted a video answering a user-submitted question, “How do they make decaf coffee when the caffeine is in the bean?” Craig Benzine, “host/coffee connoisseur,” describes a method for decaffeinating coffee called “supercritical carbon dioxide decaffeination,” where green coffee beans are put in a pressure vessel and carbon dioxide is used as a …

Coffee Roasting Chemistry: Chlorogenic Acids

by Emma Sage, Coffee Science Manager, Specialty Coffee Association of America Chlorogenic Acids: Chemistry & Reality Coffee roasters and coffee-minded chemistry aficionados, myself included, often speak of chlorogenic acids (also known as caffeoylquinic acids or “CQAs”) in coffee. There may be hundreds of scientific studies published on these important constituents of coffee. However, what do we …

Atmospherics: Delivering More than a Cup

By Emma Sage Scientifically speaking, drinking a cup of coffee is what is called a multimodal sensory experience. This means that it’s the interaction of our five senses, and all the external factors influencing them (called “multisensory interactions”), which underlie our perception of flavor (Auvray and Spence 2008). There is also research (and lots of anecdotal …

Roya Recovery Project Info

Hemileia vastatrix, or Coffee Leaf Rust (Roya in Spanish), is a leaf fungus that causes significant damage to coffee plants and therefore the supply and quality of crop for several harvest cycles after infestation. Today, it is creating a state of emergency in many parts of Central America. Most experts conclude that a warmer-than -normal …

An Introduction to Coffea Genetics

By Emma Sage, Coffee Science Manager, Specialty Coffee Association of America In an era where wild coffee is in actual imminent danger, the industry is increasingly interested in keeping up with the many scientific advances in coffee. In order to follow the current news, research, and events related to the genetics of Coffea arabica, it …