Serving a piping hot cup of rich, dark coffee makes your clientele feel instantly comfortable, but keeping your beans or ground coffee at the peak of freshness can be a challenge when you buy in bulk. There are several factors that will degrade the taste, aroma and mouth feel of your coffee. Fortunately, it is not difficult to address all of them to store your coffee simply and cost effectively.
Air is the first thing that you must keep away from your coffee beans and especially from ground coffee. It is the oils in the coffee beans that create that simultaneously tantalizing and calming array of rich, dark flavors. The longer that beans or grounds are in contact with the air, the more those precious oils dry out, giving your coffee a flat, stale taste. This is especially true of flavored coffees, which is why they are sold in vacuum-packed bags in supermarkets. Few wholesalers use vacuum bags, however, so you may need to purchase airtight canisters for your coffee.
Light and heat affect coffee in a similar way as air does, degrading the oils and compromising the richness of the taste. Even though coffee in large, clear glass or acrylic glass containers or bins looks attractive and homey, it exposes your coffee to too much light. It`s best to store coffee away from any direct sources of heat such as cook tops, ovens, heating vents or coffee machines. Make sure that you place your canisters out of direct sunlight to keep them cool.
In the past, conventional wisdom insisted that the best place to store coffee was the freezer, but that has been proven untrue. Moisture also has an injurious effect on coffee, so putting it in the freezer is not a good idea, especially if you`re storing it in bulk. Even when stored in smaller quantities, when you take the same bag in and out of the cold it is likely that condensation will develop. The dampness will sink into the beans, diluting and degrading the oils and weakening the flavor.
Another consideration is the fact that coffee is porous. If you put whole beans or especially ground coffee in the refrigerator or freezer in any kind of bag, while it is slowly drying out it is also busily absorbing the aromas of whatever foods you have in the refrigerator or freezer.
Since purchasing coffee in small, vacuum-sealed bags is not cost-effective for a business, the best way to store coffee is to keep the smallest amount that is practical in opaque, airtight canisters in the coolest, dimmest spot that is still convenient to the coffee station. Store the rest in large, opaque, airtight bins in a dark, cool corner of your storeroom. The less often you open this larger container, the longer your coffee will retain its freshness.
The coffee lovers at UpForFood highly recommend talking to the storage experts at Wares of Knutsford to find the perfect opaque and airtight canisters for all of your coffee storage needs.
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