With more and more people turning to healthier and organic food, organic coffee beans have long since joined the bandwagon. They are actually coffee beans which grown without any use of harmful herbicides or pesticides. Although not as high yielding as the ordinary coffee beans, these coffee beans that are organically grown are known to have a richer and tastier flavor.
Organic coffee beans are popular among environment-conscious coffee drinkers. Since these beans do not use commercially produced fertilizers and pesticides, no harmful chemical is used that can harm the environment. When it rains, the pesticides and fertilizers can flow to any body of water nearby which can cause the oxygen levels to drop. When there is not enough oxygen, fish and other aquatic life can die. Therefore organic farming of coffee is advisable so as to protect the environment.
Healthy Soil, Healthy Environment
Organically grown coffee beans also help maintain the natural health of the soil. When fertilizers and pesticides are used, they deplete the soil’s natural nutrients. Many of the chemicals in pesticides and fertilizers can affect soil conservation because they are persistent soil contaminants. Use of these chemicals affects the soil’s general biodiversity. Without these chemicals, the soil maintains its quality and when more organic matter is present in the soil, the soil will have more water retention. This is especially beneficially during drought season where yield from organic farming is known to be higher than those farms which use pesticides and fertilizers.
Since organic farming of coffee beans does not use commercially produced pesticides and fertilizers, persistent organic pollutants do not pose any environmental problems. These pollutants which are often found in commercially produced pesticides, such as toxaphene, mirex, hexachlorobenzene, heptachlor, endrin, dieldrin, DDT, chlordane, and aldrin, are not bio-degradable. They can remain in the environment for many years and can even travel great distances by air. They have the ability to dissipate and become deposited in different regions thereby poisoning non-target organisms.
Improved Crop Yield
Organic coffee beans also have a better yield than their non-organic counterparts. There are certain pesticides such as pentachlorophenol, methyl parathion, and DDT that are known to stunt growth because of pesticides hinder nitrogen fixation. Nitrogen fixation is a natural process where nitrogen in the environment is transformed to ammonia. It is needed for the biosynthesis of amino acids to proteins and nucleotides to RNA and DNA. Organic farming of coffee beans does not, in any way, hinder the process of nitrogen fixation.
Organic coffee beans do not make pests pesticide resistant. Initially, using commercially produced pesticides can annihilate a lot of pests but those pests, with slight variations in their genetics can become pesticide resistant and populate. Because of natural selection, the new breed of pests will be resistant to the pesticides in use.
Organic farming of coffee beans use other methods to eliminate pests such as placing lures or traps to catch pests, covering the weeds with plastic, applying heat, and manually removing the weeds. By turning to these alternatives, organic coffee beans aid in reducing the effects of pesticides and fertilizers to the environment.
Our Top Recommendations
The Best Organic Coffee
These are our top choices based on customer reviews and our own personal preference. However the choice is fantastic so it has been very hard for us to limit it to just these six brands. Scroll down for even more!
1) Marley Lively Up Espresso Roast Organic Coffee Beans
- Marley Coffee Organic Strong Dark Roast Espresso Coffee Beans 227g - Lively Up Blend - Marley Coffee - From The Family Of Bob Marley - For All Coffee Machines - Strength 5
- Lively Up yourself with this big, bold espresso roast – an almighty blend of full-bodied, yet well-balanced coffee offering hints of cocoa, candied fruit and sweet caramel. Embrace the positive...
- Founded in Jamaica in 2007 by Rohan Marley, Marley Coffee is a coffee company from the family of Bob Marley and includes Jamaica Blue Mountain, Rainforest Alliance and Organic coffee blends.
- PREMIUM QUALITY: An espresso blend of four premium quality varieties of Arabica beans, grown using organic methods.
- ORGANICALLY GROWN: From crops grown in the country of origin using organic methods that care for the environment.
- HAND HARVESTED: Ensures only the very best fruits at the optimal point of ripeness are chosen for this premium coffee.
3) Cafédirect Machu Picchu Organic Fairtrade Ground Arabica Coffee
- 100 PERCENT ORGANIC ARABICA COFFEE: Enjoy our best-selling coffee that delivers a rich and smooth flavour with overtones of fine, dark chocolate and a light acidity. Our delicious Machu Picchu coffee...
- GROUND COFFEE: Our coffee is expertly ground for filter or cafetiere use. A full-bodied, strength 4 coffee to brighten up your day.
- SINGLE ORIGIN: Cafedirect Single Origins offer distinct flavours from unique places around the world. Discover individuality in every cup, with characteristics shaped and influenced by the land.
4) Coffee Masters Peruvian Coffee Beans
- Wake Up To Premium Barista Quality Coffee At Home - Enjoy a delicious cup of coffee any time of day with fresh coffee beans roasted to perfection in the UK. Ideal for espresso machines, cafetieres.
- 100% Organic Arabica Coffee Beans, Soft And Well-Balanced - Coffee Masters Peruvian Coffee Beans are soft and well balanced with a gentle, citrus-like acidity, which is complimented by a delicate...
- 1kg Coffee Beans Roasted In The UK - Great with or without milk. These premium quality coffee beans are grown in Jaen and San Ignacio in Northern Peru and roasted to perfection here in the UK.
5) Pret A Manger Organic Classic Blend Ground Coffee
6) Mindful Coffee Organic Bulletproof Ground Coffee
- Fast Free Delivery - Order by 1pm for same day dispatch (Monday-Friday)(Saturday and Sunday orders dispatched on Monday)
- Lab Tested - Bulletproof coffee optimised for a performance enhancing experience, don’t drink coffee with performance robbing toxins!
- Certified Organic and Fairtrade - Without certification how do you know other coffee labelled organic and fairtrade really are? We remove the need to trust what we say by proving it with our...
How to Grow Organic Coffee Plants
With society’s thrust for healthier living, people have now turned to organic coffee beans for their coffee drinking experience. Organic farming has two goals: promote a healthy body and protect the environment. Organic farming does not use any chemicals in pesticides, fertilizers, fungicides, and herbicides that can harm not only humans but the environment as well. Chemicals can pose health risks to human beings because they are known to cause cancers and other diseases.
Chemicals also harm the environment because they are not biodegradable and can be easily transported by air which can harm even the non-target organisms. Also, when it rains, the chemicals can flow to nearby bodies of water which can cause oxygen levels to drop which will eventually kill fish and other aquatic life. Chemicals are also known to destroy the natural nutrient of the soil.
Organic coffee beans can be grown even for personal consumption. Because these coffee beans can be fairly expensive and hard to come by, an individual who wishes to have organic coffee can cultivate the coffee plants in the comfort of one’s home. The coffee beans can be grown in one’s backyard, in the sunroom, or in the greenhouse. It can be an ornamental plant because it has large leaves and white flowers. The coffee beans can be harvested, roasted and brewed without leaving one’s home.
Location is key
If an individual wants to cultivate organic coffee beans in one’s home, he/she must first choose a location. It must have 12 hours of diffused sunlight daily, night temperatures must not go below sixty degrees Fahrenheit, and must have consistent humidity. If one intends to have the coffee plant as an indoor houseplant, a soft grow light must be installed to make up for shorter sunlight hours. A trellis or curtain can provide diffused sunlight. The coffee plant needs to be watered more because of lack of humidity.
Which coffee plant is best to grow?
When the location has been picked, the young coffee plants can be ordered from distributors or sellers. There are two types of organic coffee beans: Robusta and Arabica.
- Arabica can pollinate by itself therefore only one plant is needed.
- Robusta needs many plants.
Transplanting new plants
When the young coffee plants arrive, they must be transferred to larger pots with organic soil. Organic soil can be bought from garden stores. Alfalfa meal must also be purchased for the nitrogen needs of the coffee plants. Grounded and used organic coffee beans can also be added to the soil mix.
Weekly care and maintenance
- The young coffee plants must be watered twice a week.
- If the plants are grown indoors, a mister must be used during the week for the extra humidity.
- The plant must be pruned and trimmed.
- To encourage flowering, the plants must be watered less during the winter for 2 ½ months when they are a couple of years old.
- Coffee plants take 2 to 4 years to flower.
- The coffee fruits can be harvested when ripe.
- The two coffee beans must be removed from each fruit then air dried.
- The dried organic coffee beans can be roasted and ground before a cup of organic coffee can be enjoyed.
Check out our detailed guide of how to grow coffee plants at home for more information.
What are Fair Trade Coffee Beans?
Fair trade is a different way to do business. It is an agreement between cooperatives and coffee bean producers. The agreement between the two parties induces some positive and negative effects. The key factor in the agreement is the coffee producers receive payments that are higher than the standard price of coffee. On the negative side, the price to buy coffee for consumers is somewhat higher.
But, the extra money spent is indirectly contributed back to the community. The main focus of the fair trade coffee agreement is to promote healthier working conditions, as well as provide an increased economic incentive for farmers to harvest coffee.
Other positive effects consist of:
- A more direct relationship between the coffee producer and the cooperative purchasing the coffee. This provides more profit for the farmer and the opportunity to compete in the global market.
- Prompt and fair payment for farmers, allowing for faster transactions and increased morale in coffee producers.
- Providing opportunities for marginalized producers, giving coffee growers the chance to expand and improve production.
- Standards that protect workers, and requires producers to support the community.
As with anything else, specific standards must be met by producers and fair trade cooperatives for business to be conducted. Fair labor conditions must be in effect within the coffee producers work force. Safe working conditions must be provided and child labor is strictly prohibited. As previously stated, the trades between cooperatives and producers must be as direct as possible with minimal use of any middle men. Fair trade farmers and farm workers are completely in charge of the use of revenue and any investments to be made. In addition, fair trade farmers and workers must invest fair trade premiums into community development organizations like healthcare services and scholarship programs.
The fair trade coffee agreement is an intricate program that benefits many people, directly and indirectly. Coffee producers are provided with more benefits, revenue and opportunities. While cooperatives are able to create a beneficial relationship, conducting business directly with the producers.
Some of our favorite free trade coffees include:
- Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee – In our book, this is in the top-three all time. Excellent coffee.
- Bucks County Coffee Colombian La Vereda – Intense yet balanced; Grown by Embera Chiami Indians in the Andes Mountains
- Poas Volcanic Earth – Delicious beans grown on the misty, fertile soil of Costa Rica’s most-visited active volcano.
- Tres Rios Valdivia – A truly unique coffee experience, this gem from the “Bordeaux” of Costa Rican coffee is sure to have you coming back for more.
- Tarrazu Montecielo – Grown and ripened at an altitude of 4,200 – 4,600 feet, these beans display an intense dark flavor with a cheerful finish.
What are Organic Coffee Beans?
Organic coffee is produced without the use of synthetic substances like pesticides, insecticides or any other potentially harmful chemicals. Coffee bean plants are produced organically by using non-chemical fertilizers, like composting materials.
Why drink Organic Coffee?
Organic coffee is grown without the use of any harmful chemicals.
- That means that there is no risk of any chemical ingestion which may harm the body.
- It has higher levels of anti-oxidants and heart healthy nutrients as compared to the coffee which is grown conventionally.
- Coffee grown organically contains caffeine in its purest form. It a great source of a natural energy booster.
- Organic coffee is shade grown. This allows all of the health nutrients to be preserved.
- Shade grown organic coffee has more flavor and a better, bolder taste than conventionally grown coffee.
- It can be included in the diet for achieving weight loss goals.
- Organic coffee is a better option to be consumed by pregnant women as compared to the conventional coffee.
What are the environmental benefits of organic coffee?
Organic coffee is grown without the use of synthetic chemicals and pesticides. The farmers apply methods of composting, inter-cropping and terracing to build a healthy soil base for the coffee plants. Coffee is a shade-loving shrub and works out better when planted under taller trees. To enhance the area that the coffee is grown, the coffee farmers plant canopy trees, usually lime, orange, banana, and avocado trees. Organic farming is the most natural way to grow coffee trees.
There are many environmental benefits from organic farming. Organic farming maintains soil fertility by the use of natural methods, such as, adding animal manures to the soil. It provides wildlife and migrating birds the proper refuge. Pests and diseases are controlled through the use of ecological methods. Soil erosion becomes less of a problem in organic farming areas because the forests are better utilized. The coffee farmers are very careful in protecting the vegatation that is native to their areas. The water systems are maintained by recirculating the water through anaerobic digestion systems to eliminate any pollution. You can say that they farm the “old-fashioned way”, in harmony with nature.
Since organic coffee is grown without chemicals, there is less harm to the environment, than the coffee that is grown with chemical and pesticides.
- Shade grown organic coffee maintains forest cover eliminating the damage caused from deforestation.
- Saving forests ensures the availability of habitat for birds and animals.
- Higher forest cover also helps prevent soil erosion.
- Bird and animal droppings along with dead and fallen leaves of the trees act as a natural fertilizer for the soil.
- Insects, which could normally destroy coffee leaves, are controlled by the birds that remain in the forest.
Why is Organic Coffee More Expensive than Regular Coffee Beans?
Organic coffee is slightly higher priced than the conventionally grown coffee owing to the larger span of time spent in producing it. This coffee is harvested manually, thus eliminating mechanical equipment in the process. The higher price of the organic coffee is worth the health and environment benefits that it has to offer.
Is Organic Coffee Healthy for you?
What is the benefit of organic coffee to the coffee-lover? Besides it being an excellent tasting cup of coffee, this chemical-free cup of coffee that provides numerous health benefits. Caffeinated and decaffeinated coffees are a major sources of antioxidants in the diet. Short-term memory can be improved by drinking coffee and it can increase your metabolism. Coffee lowers some types of cancers and Type 2 diabetes can be reduced. There are reports that show coffee is good for the teeth, showing that the antibacterial effects from roasted coffee beans can lessen cavities. And coffee, is also reported to prevents or stops headaches and migraines.
Buying organic coffee should make you feel good. You are acknowledging the farmers that are committed to organic farming. The farmers recognise the importance of the environment. Family farms are saved and economic independence is sustained in poor rural areas. And, finally, purchasing organic coffee helps preserve biodiversity on our planet.
When consuming your next cup of organic coffee think about all the good factors. Factors like the health benefits and the environmental benefits that drinking a good cup of organic coffee delivers. And, knowing that you have made the right choice.