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Thread: Green Bean Cross Contamination?

  1. #1
    Junior Member samthe2can's Avatar
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    Green Bean Cross Contamination?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi, bit of an odd post here, but its playing on my mind so I want to find out if anyone knows.


    So I am allergic to nuts (anaphylaxis) and this controls a lot of my eating habits, I never eat anything anyone else has prepared and only buy brands I feel comfortable with, just to get an idea of my phobia.


    Getting into coffee, I thought it would be a better bet for me to buy green beans and roast myself (just in popcorn poppers for now) for my own peace of mind and my wallets, but then this warning on the Beanbay got me thinking "Process with care, this is a natural raw product from coffee origin and may contain sticks, stones and other items that you won't want in your grinder or coffee machine.
    Some of the growers probably grow nuts aswel, so this started nudging its way into my thoughts.

    I would be OK if I could wash the beans, but that's a big no no haha.


    So what I am really asking is if there a chance for cross contamination of nuts and coffee beans?

  2. #2
    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Process with care, this is a natural raw product from coffee origin and may contain sticks, stones and other items that you won't want in your grinder or coffee machine.
    ...and that could be anything including false teeth or a 308 bullet.

    The bullet was found when it shot out the side of the drum and through his roof leaving the shell casing in the roasted beans and the teeth by a another roaster in the cooling tray. Both were in Australia, neither were from BeanBay beans but yes anything could be found in a raw product like this.

    I don't know much about anaphylaxis but do feel sorry for your situation and unknown products. Of all the farms I've been to I've never seen nuts growing with coffee (only bananas, corn, mango) but that isn't very definitive.

    I could never guess what the coffee pickers had for breakfast or if they were eating nuts while picking but the up side is that they are picking cherry, the seed (coffee bean) is extracted later and unlikely to have as much random hand contact.

    If washing helps, then it would be safer to purchase washed coffees (ie: Peru Ceja, Colombian Volcan, Yirg) avoid the naturals and sun dried ones as they will typically spend most of the process dry. After washing and drying they are bagged, shipped, packaged here in 2.5kg lots and freighted out.

    You could try washing and drying, it could work in small amounts okay but you would want to make sure you didn't leave them damp too long as they will grow mold pretty quickly when wet. It would need a bit of experimentation to get it right. Rinsing 50g of beans and drying on a towel right before roasting is probably what I would try if it was me.

    I would think green coffee would be a tiny risk but hey, I'm not allergic so it's easy to dismiss.
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    Senior Member Lyrebird's Avatar
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    The allergens in nuts are proteins, mostly things like prolamins and legumins.

    They are very unlikely to survive roasting given that they would be on the surface of the beans if present due to contamination.
    Last edited by Lyrebird; 3 Weeks Ago at 06:51 PM.
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    Junior Member samthe2can's Avatar
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    Thankyou very much for the replies, it does set me at ease. Especially since the first bag I ordered was the Peru Ceja.

    So washing won't actually affect the beans as long as i am just washing what i am roasting that day? that could certainly work for me. I had read that I shouldn't wash them, but perhaps they meant a more rigorous wash that might remove some of the caffeine or washing and leaving them for a few days, i would only be rinsing under a tap.
    Would it change the roasting process or the end product at all?



    Good point about the proteins not surviving too, I suppose if there was any on the surface of the bean its likely to blow off with the chaff.


    Again, thankyou for taking the time to reply, very much appreciated.
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  5. #5
    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Rinsing under a tap, towel drying and then roasting straight away won't make much (if any) difference to the process.

    Green beans are not "very" porous so you would have to soak them for a length of time to change the moisture level by a lot. You might find rinsed beans actually work better in the popper as it should lengthen the roast times slightly.

    Experiment and let us know how it goes!



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