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Thread: storing coffee in the fridge

  1. #1
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    storing coffee in the fridge

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Whats the consensus on storing coffee in the fridge? I havent been storing it in the fridge as I thought it might be ruined by condensation, but then this heat cant be too good for it either.

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Hi tintub,

    My usual practice is to store my beans after roasting in an airtight container which I then keep in the normal fridge compartment. I find the beans stay fresh for a good week if kept this way. By using an airtight container I dont have problems with condensation and coffee aromas spreading to all the other stored foods.

    Cheers,

    Louis

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Coffee is best stored in a cool, dark cupboard in an airtight *container. We teach to avoid: light, heat, oxygen, water and smells. Fridge storage is not recommended as there is loss of flavour due to leaching and condensation upon temperature change- i.e every time you move the container to use it or open the fridge- however, I will resort to use of the fridge in times of consistently very high temperature- if I lived in the tropics for example. Its just another excuse to roast small batches often *[smiley=thumbsup.gif]

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    I always store my beans unground, of course, in an airtight container on the brick shelf in the kitchen above the machine.

    It seems to work just fine and I have never noticed any deterioration in quality over the time it is there typically several days. The container is just translucent plastic.

    Grant

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    Senior Member robusto's Avatar
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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Refrigeration is not recommended for coffee because it is a hygroscopic substance -- it absorbs water. Water spoils coffee.

    When coffee, sealed or not, is taken from the fridge, it is around 4C degrees. When the lid is lifted for grinding, room temperature air, complete with humidity at anything from 50 - 80 per cent, condenses on the coffee.


    Robusto

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Hey all,

    N00b question; what about storing the beans in a (proper) wine fridge? The temperature and humidity are controlled, and it is also sealed?

    It seemed to do the trick on my last (now almost depleted) stock of beans....

    Cheers
    Paul

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    If you want to convert a good wine cabinet into a coffee storage device, go right ahead.

    You dont need that sort of temperature control, just a broken bar fridge with a bag of silica beads inside. The fridge should be insulated enough to keep the temps consistent. Just take a tour around some neighbourhoods having council clean-up and youll see at least one coffee storage unit sitting out on the council strip.

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Hey nunu,

    Thanks for that!

    I already have the wine fridge, and it has some room in it (better stop drinking wine I think :-) ), so no worries there (more room then the bar fridge anyway).

    Cheers
    Paul

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    If you come across a full-sized fridge, bonus score. Two compartments, the bottom for greens, and the top for roasted.

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Ona rampage, I think thte same sort of thing will happen to roasted beans stored in temp humidity controlled wine fridge as to those stored in a nornal fridge. Its when they are exposed to normal atmospheric conditions that the beans absorb moisture and will spoil.

    As for green beans, well they can also absorb moisture too and more imortantly they can absorb smells. I remember being advised not to store them with anything pungent as the beans will pick up the flavour, like oinions in the pantry.

    I keep my green beans in the calico bags they arrive in and these are stored in the freebie bulk dog food containers I get from pet food places. If you buy a 18 kg bag you get a free container to put them in, Ive got three now, full of beans.

    Roasted (usually about 300grams) I keep in the Maxwell and Williams ceramic jars (silicon gasket and spring clip) out on the bench ready to go. ;)

    Boris

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Thanks for the tip Boris; I will keep that in mind.

    Probably a silly thing, but.....
    The last set of roasted beans I got was a large lot (about a kilo) as it was from a place near where my wife was working, but now isnt (and it is a long way from home). So, in that scenario I put out some in an airtight container on the counter for use, and the rest in the wine fridge.

    Now, if beans absorb the moisture, wouldnt keeping the others in the wine fridge keep them fresher then keeping the whole lot out on the counter? I presume the moisture absorbtion rate would be similar (i.e. beans stored on the counter would absorb at a similar rate as those just out of the fridge?)?

    Confused.

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Ona ramapge, Im not a 100% sure how to answer the question, so bare with me.

    Air tight is air tight, in or out of the fridge.
    In the Fridge
    They will still be oxidising, but at a slower rate, cooler temp does that. When they come out out the fridge and opened, they will begin to equalise to the ambient atmosphere, temp and humidity. As they start to warm, moist air will condensate on the bean. This will happen on the inside and outside of an air tight container left on the kitchen bench if its been in the fridge. Water and bean in the container unground = bad.

    Not in the fridge
    An airtight container on the bench will not stop oxidisation, but it will help to slow it down compared to say a brown paper bag or a foil bag done up loosely. The less contact with air the better. Because the beans are already atmospherically balanced with the ambient temp and humidity, there is less concern about extra moisture sweating from thermo inbalance. But ambient temp does have its own problems in that if you have a hopper full of beans, as the humidity varies throughout the day, so will their moisture content. This means that during the day you will have to adjust the grind setting to compensate as it does affect pour rate. Most cafes dont but there are a few who do, Bean Ground and Drunk is one of them.

    I think you will find most CSs who have bench top grinders with hoppers would only put in enough beans to grind for the cup they are making right away.

    Hows that, believe me? 2muchcoffeeman would be able to correct me if Ive buggered it up. ;)

    Cheers

    Boris

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Is it better to store green beans in a cloth bag or in the sealed plastic bags?
    Ilan

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Ref and Air Con 101..
    Now a Mate of mine is a Highly Qualified Aircon Engineer, How Highly you ask ? was offered consulting work for the Asia Pacific for a Major Hamburger Chain, but declined as he is into tail down mode.. FWIW they still chase him..
    Anyway enough about that, I gave him a hand to Build a Coolroom for a Florist in a Centre we both look after.
    Flowers are temperature and humidity sensitive so we built the coolroom and put an appropriate unit in and dialled it in to temp and humidity..
    From memory the Coolroom cost 3X and the Unit cost 2X Trade price
    Ill talk to him in the next couple of days and try and pick his brains some more..
    FWIW I have a coolroom built for hanging Venison/Goat/Pig and it runs from a 12 Volt Air Con unit..
    Tepin


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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Hey Boris,
    Thanks for that explanation; makes a lot of sense!
    Looks like the new beans wont be going into the fridge then....

    :-)

    Cheers
    Paul

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Talked to my Mate, and its possible to make a Specific coolroom for storing roasted Coffee in a totally Neutral Condition, but he tells me that its probably not cost effective as one needs to get specific condensing units and the coil temp has to be adjusted to a higher temp.
    FWIW the Boy Child (mine) is currently building a 120 server/22hd per server SAN and the requirement is 7 degreesC 0% humidity,
    Tepin

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    [split] [link=http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1267240663/87#87][splithere][/link][splithere_end]

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Hi, *New to home roasting but just wondering if green and roasted beans could be sealed in plastic bags using a food vacuum sealer and then placed in the fridge. *Then when required take from the fridge and allow the sealed beans to equalize with ambient air temp and then opened, would this overcome the moisture absorption problem ?

  19. #19
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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Quote Originally Posted by 34243A323A666564570 link=1130930231/17#17 date=1297775876
    Hi,New to home roasting but just wondering if green and roasted beans could be sealed in plastic bags using a food vacuum sealer and then placed in the fridge.Then when required take from the fridge and allow the sealed beans to equalize with ambient air temp and then opened, would this overcome the moisture absorption problem ?
    This topic has been addressed time and time again on here. Use of the search function at the top right of your screen will give you plenty of hits on the subject of vacuum sealing and should answer all your questions. :)


    Java "Search engines are your friends!" phile

  20. #20
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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    Brad123, green beans will keep for about 3 years so really dont need to take up valuable fridge real estate.

    As Javaphile has already said, theres been plenty of discussion around storing of roasted beans, a search will find plenty to think about.

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    Re: storing coffee in the fridge

    I store mine in the cupboard at home because it turns over more quickly, however, at work the beans sit around for longer so I store the beans in the fridge and only grind what I need and use all the grinds immediately.

    Ive done a comparison test with fresh beans, and beens that have been refrigerated for two weeks, and yes the refrigerated beans have been opened a few times a week taking in some condensation* (I buy fresh AllPress beans weekly from my local cafe).

    I used my LaPavoni leaver pull machine and found absolutely no difference in the flavour at all, they were both rich and creamy, and Fresh.

    I think if you need to store beans for an extended period then the fridge is a fantastic way to do this.

    And now the big no no! The freezer! Im sure to get some snobbery for this one! I did the same thing with beans from the freezer, and you know what, if you use the grounds immediately after grinding, the coffee is absolutely fine, I cant taste the difference. I find when the coffee is ground, it is also warmed so the temperature of the extraction is pretty consistent.

    If I want to store coffee for months - say a holiday house, then the freezer is a completely viable way to do this.



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