Did you know coffee was a fruit?

Did you know coffee was a fruit? - Gregorys Coffee

Growing up I used to sneak into my parents pantry cabinets, pop the lid on the tin of Foldgers and huff the powerful aroma of ground coffee. As far as I knew, at age 8, that is exactly where coffee was born and died, in a tin of Folders. Many people grow up with a similar understanding. It wasn’t until years later that I learned where coffee beans actually come from. 

Coffee beans are seeds of coffee cherries that grow, mature and ripen on trees. These trees, primarily Coffea Arabica and Coffea Canephora, grow best around the equator at higher altitudes. When coffee cherries have ripened and are ready for harvest they are mostly picked by hand and carried down extremely steep slopes in baskets and bags by their gatherers. These ripe cherries are then brought to a central location where they are all mixed together so the fruit can be pulped and separated from the beans. The beans continue on their journey while the fruit is often discarded as a waste product or redistributed as a natural fertilizer or chicken feed. The ripe fruit of coffee has a taste similar to cranberries with a brix reading between 18-21 and its own caffeine content as well. 

Today people have started to find more productive uses for the pulp of the cherry including, syrup, alcohol, flour and tea. This amazing and versatile pulp is known as “cascara” which in Spanish simply means “skin” or “peel”.

- Jake Leonti, Director of Coffee