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What is Coffee?

What is coffee? What is the definition of coffee? According to Merriam Webster, it is a beverage created by either infusion, decoction or percolation.

The source of coffee is the roast and ground seeds or beans, of a tropical evergreen shrub commonly known as a coffee plant (genus Coffea).

It is once described as “The gasoline of life” coffee can be served hot or cold.

The two most popular species of coffee plants are the Arabica and Robusta.

Coffea Arabica is traditionally grown and harvested in the Central and South America regions with other areas such as the Caribbean and Indonesia. These growers are responsible for up to 80% of the global production of coffee.

The Robusta or correct name Coffea Canephora can be found in many parts of Africa and produces the other 20% of global production of coffee. There are another 23 species of coffee plants, but the two I have mentioned will be the main ones you will be familiar with.

We all know making a coffee only takes a few moments, but the process before you see the final result takes a few years.

The seed of a coffee plant takes approximately 2 to 3 months to germinate from a seed to a plant. Like many young plants, they are fragile and are shaded, usually under a cloth to shield them from the natural elements.

Then follows 3 to 4 years of growth before producing those beautiful un-roasted green coffee beans.

During this same period, the plants bear small flowers. These are white with a hint of Jasmine-like fragrance. These same flowers eventually after a short period of approximately five months will develop into red cherries.

The cherries are generally ready to harvest once per year unless you happen to be a coffee plant in Colombia who have two flowering opportunities each year culminating in two harvests.

While the world modernises and evolves, harvesting coffee remains labour intensive and achieved by many hands.

Taking Colombia as an example, labour costs are low compared to many other countries. The prospect of transporting heavy machinery to replace the workforce will meet many difficulties.

In many cases, the terrains where the plants flourish will never allow for such machinery to be delivered or installed Mules in the wet seasons are still the normal mode of transport high up in the Andes.

As soon as the coffee growers have an abundance of bright red cherries, the harvesting begins. Some cherries will be selectively picked and many others by a stripping motion. The former method permits follow-up visits to a particular crop of plants a few days later. The Coffee Picker will harvest any additional cherries that were not ripened enough on the first visit.

This latter method is quick; the Coffee Picker runs his hand along the chosen branch. In doing so, he will pull all the beans to the ground. He will attempt to avoid the green ones as these will have a negative impact on the final taste of the coffee.

One to remember: The seed is referred to as the bean and the fruit is known as the cherry, due to their magnificent red outers when mature.

Now the cherry harvest has been completed; it is time to retrieve the coffee bean out of the fruit. It has to be achieved as effortless as possible to avoid spoilage.

To do this, the grower can opt for one of four processes known as Natural, Honey, Pulped natural, and washed. The final decision relies on where the Coffee farmer is located and what season he is harvesting in. Here I will explain the two most common methods briefly.

Chart showing 4 processes of coffee

  • Dry processing is the oldest process and done by hand. The cherries with their skins intact are cleaned and sorted to remove any damaged or unripe ones. The final crop is placed on brick or concrete surfaces to allow drying under the ever-present sun. This process usually takes up to four weeks, and the grower will be turning the cherries manually to ensure all are ready. 
  • Wet processing is where the grower submerges the cherries into large volumes of water — thus allowing the removal of the skins of the cherries before any drying process. Any rejected cherries are easy to detect as they usually float to the surface.

Whichever way the grower decides to harvest his cherries, at some point he will need to remove all the outer parts of each cherry.

Next, the coffee grower will concentrate on the silver coloured skin on the beans. Here he will remove the skin via polishing the bean. He doesn’t need to do it, but many growers around the world accept the belief that a polished bean is superior to an unpolished bean.

Finally, the coffee grower can sort and grade his harvest of coffee beans. Those that he deems to be too small or has blemishes will be rejected. He will also discard any beans that show signs of over-fermentation or insect damaged.

In conclusion to what is coffee?

So our hardworking coffee grower has a product ready to sell locally to his domestic market or export to a global market.

This export market is the ultimate goal for any serious coffee grower. The market is colossal. It is estimated that some 5 million people are involved in one way or another in the growing and processing of coffee worldwide.

One of those unsung heroes of mine. Used his weather-beaten hands and weakened back after years of bending and picking up the next bean for my morning coffee.

Let’s show our appreciation by sharing our new found knowledge with all the coffee drinkers you know by starting conversations with a question – What is coffee? You will be amazed at what more you now know.

The likelihood of this good-natured and humble man who has earned little to accommodate me and my morning thirst, knowing I appreciate him every day, I know it is shallow. But I do.

So remember. Next time you are visiting a busy street cafe. Bear a thought for the journey that bean has taken. The love it has received from the beginning of its life and the sheer pleasure you gain from that aroma of coffee.

Why not tell all who matter the most to you the ins and outs of what is coffee. Like me become immersed in this beautiful world.

You have undoubtedly heard of caffeine and coffee; wherever it is produced, it will have large amounts of caffeine.

Caffeine’s effects have most certainly had a significant part to play in the global popularity in the drink. I love that initial boost I experience each day with my first cup of almost black nectar.

Why not read my next articles on the subjects of caffeine and coffee & the incredible history of coffee.

The incredible history of Coffee.

 Caffeine and Coffee.

If you cannot wait, go and read my first published blog –

An Englishman’s Journey with the World of Coffee

Image credits to:

News.starbuck.com
Werstupid.com
Ncausa.org
MDPI.com

Blog Posting. How do I plan the ingredients?

Blog Posting. How do I plan the ingredients? This article is directed at the “Newbie” website owner and budding Entrepreneural Baby Boomer.

Apart from, being occupied as a writer, I share my time, with two of my favourite pastimes and they are cooking & baking. So I decided to create a blog named “How do I plan the ingredients of Blog Posting,” I thought why not indulge myself with all three interests and combine them.

Please forgive me, for any overstretched connections, however, this blog post is meant as a light-hearted read to all readers who love to write, cook, bake and read.

Ingredient 1. Readability.

Reading from a screen is often tricky, and indeed if you are my age, it is most certainly the case. I am aware that if I wish for people to read my blog postings, then I must ensure that it is easy to do so. At the end of writing this blog post, I will proofread it, followed by, installing into the WordPress Plugin Yoast SEO, for their forthright readability check-check and keyphrase analysis.

Ingredient 2. Include Succinct Point.

Ultimately, I will not criticise anyone, writing blog posts is not easy, and writing nearly every day can be challenging. However, I have often seen blog postings that have taken me nowhere, and like everyone else, it is not long before I have clicked away.

Cooking, baking & content writing blog postings involve much planning. Start with a list of ingredients or in this case specific keywords. In your preparation. Stage List how the content will appear and implement the chosen keywords. This plan should keep you on track and prevent you from straying from the relevant point of the blog post.

Ingredient 3. Write clear paragraphs with short sentences & limit difficult words.

A crucial ingredient I at times overdone. Just like my early days of baking, I did not see the advantage of measuring how much flour or salt the recipe required. I always overdid it, and the same should be said for my sentences. My paragraphs are usually no more than 3 to 5 lines in length, but my sentencing still requires more shortening.

On a positive note, I feel it is essential to avoid words with more than four syllables as they are often difficult to read and even harder to see on a screen.

Writing a Blog posting.

I always think of the days when I travelled on the London Underground or the New York Metro. I would have my tablet open to something I wanted to discover. At the same time, aware of the need to continue looking up to check if I had missed my stop. Thus losing my place and often re-reading the same sentence time and again. I imagine many readers going through the same challenge and feel empathy with them.

Ingredient 4. Make sure you have stirred your ingredients to a perfect structure.

When creating a chosen topic for my next blog posting, I try to follow a core structure that firstly, I have seen others do and secondly, it personally pleases me as a reader. I love the model that has the following structure:

  • A proper, relevant, and exciting introduction that sets the stage for a discussion.
  • At that point, I will enjoy the explanation of the blog post’s point of reference.
  • As each point becomes apparent, once again, the explanation accompanies it.
  • Finally, the whole blog posting comes to a natural wrapping up stage usually with a Call to Action.

Ingredient 5. A good dollop of transition Words.

I cannot deny, I definitely thought I was ok with transition words until Yoast SEO sent me a couple of reports in my early days. Now, apart from all the other checks for grammar, spelling, and plagiarism, I have incorporated a transition word check at the end of my work before publishing.

Ingredient 6. Additional unique flavouring with fresh seasoning & Imagery.

When you set out to create that beautiful cake, or that mouthwatering turkey you would never contemplate adding old and used ingredients. No, only fresh & relevant ingredients are acceptable. The same applies to content writing, images, and videos.

Never, copy and paste content, and equally important do not download “spin software” and steal ideas from others. It is so rewarding to know that what you are creating is down to you and your skills of creation. By adding strategically placed images helps the reader and enhances his or her experience.

I believe many readers are like me, they love to read blog posts that can still give a great message, albeit in different ways and styles. I may have read the topic before but this time, in a way that it becomes more relevant to me and my way of thinking.

Ingredient 7. Ensure the content fits the size of the baking tray.

In a previous blog posting, I wrote about the subject of what is an acceptable length for an SEO blog; it is now widely accepted that Google and other search engines wish to see more creative content with the minimum of 1000 words. They want to look at content in word counts of 2000+. They feel the reader should receive value from a more lengthy blog than the old 200 – 300 words notion previously believed.

Ingredient 8. Internal linking of all your ingredients.

I did warn you at the beginning some of my connections would be a bit dubious.  I hope the message has been conveyed to you of the importance of making sure the structure allows sentencing and paragraphing to blend & link to each another, and by subtitles in between to assist the reader’s ability to stay focused on the content.

It will do your website a power of good. Readers will see the depth and will appreciate the overall value of your site.

In the previous paragraph, I did just that. I hope that your readers will find it interesting and that you will be happy and contented to engage with the content and calibri.com.co. I was advised that I should look at having between 3 – 10 internal links per post. They should also be relevant and topical. So, when next writing, make sure you too have some internal links prior to blog posting.

The Summary – Paying attention to grammar and spelling  (The icing on the cake.)

We have different ways and methods for achieving anything in life. Sometimes we get by with minimal errors, and at times our efforts are full of mistakes. That is true with content writing.

My advice does not worry, in this highly technical world, we all share there are countless tools and software to get us past those horrid mistakes we often make when our brains are racing away, and our fingers are struggling to keep up.

My method is just to sit down, open up the laptop and stare for a few minutes at the screen. Why may you ask? It allows me moments to adjust to the new challenge. My eyes climatise to the screen, and my brain starts to focus, and engagement with my fingers commences. Before I know it, the blog is appearing on the screen.

I know from experience there will be a thousand errors to correct. Whether they be grammatical or just poor spelling. It is here I will turn to Grammarly Premium or to new additions I recently discovered:  Slick Write and Hemmingway Reader App.

All three are crucial to my proofreading process. Many new words and phrases that I would use in my speaking vocabulary have suddenly appeared in my writing vocabulary.

Once the checks and alterations have been accomplished. I will add the customary plagiarism check.

Finally, I will proofread again, and this time very slowly, and at the same time reading out loud. Hoping I have checked every comma, apostrophe, spelling, and Capital letter used. It’s at this point I head to Yoast SEO and examine what their valuable insights will give to me.

If you have enjoyed this blog posting article and its ingredients, please head to our website and subscribe to our Calibri Newsletter.

Our next blog posting will take this topic further with the introduction of Intelligent Personal Assistance. We look forward to seeing you again soon.

In the meantime here are some more of our previous blog postings you may find useful:

What’s the future for voice vertical visual search?

How do we optimize our YouTube videos for search?

What causes Bounce Rates and is Dwell Time important as a metric?

Mike’s Bio.

Mike Bowley is an Indoor Coffee Houseplant & Colombian Giftware Importer, SEO Content Writer, Baby Boomer, and published Author. He thrives on creating alliances with UK based Artisanal Cafe Owners and Garden Centers with artisanal product makers in Colombia.

He enjoys helping “Newbie” website owners. Plus, fellow Baby Boomer Online Entrepreneurs in getting organic content onto web pages and mobiles.

Mike has spent over 50 years in sales/marketing and shares his life and work between the UK and Colombia. He is a regular writer on both Viviamaridi and WattPad.
Visit his author’s website here: mikebowley.com.