Question about storage of roasted beans
This is my first post on CoffeeSnobs so please excuse me if I've chosen the wrong forum. I've read a lot of discussions about how roasted beans should be stored both here and in other forums and coffee-related websites. The general consensus seems to be that roasted coffee beans should be stored in an airtight container in a cool and dark place. My question relates to how roasters store and dispense their freshly roasted beans. I've been buying my beans from a reputable roaster where the beans are dispensed from a large wall mounted hopper (for want of a better word). This hopper is essentially a long vertical box with a clear perspex window the full length of the box so that the beans are visible. The beans are dispensed into bags from the bottom of the box and the boxes are obviously filled from the top. I have seen this at a number of other roasters as well. The box is not airtight and the beans are exposed to light via the perspex window on the front. I have been very happy with the beans I get from this roaster and the coffee I produce. This makes me wonder why I shouldn't store 2 or 3 days worth of beans in the hopper of my grinder. From my reading on this forum and other sources, this is generally not recommended. The reason I want to do this is that my grinder popcorns when I only have a small amount of beans in the hopper.
Welcome, and fair question. It really comes down to how long the beans are in the hopper. Just aim to minimize the time that the beans are sitting in the hopper. There's no upside to deliberately putting 2 or 3 days' supply in the hopper, beyond making sure that there is sufficient load to stop beans popcorning. On the other hand, I'm not anal about clearing out yesterday's beans. Grind for a few seconds to clear the grinds that were actually ground yesterday, and you are probably ok. Be prepared for some contrary advice
Originally Posted by davejude
I keep a couple of days worth of roasted coffee in my hopper. amounts to about 1 lbs. of coffee. I'm okay with this as my hopper is away from direct sunlight.
Thanks for the replies, both of which are somewhat reassuring. I am curious what people think of the way the roaster stores and dispenses beans (as I describe in my original post) as I imagine beans could be in there for more than 2 or 3 days before being dispensed.
Also, I realised after posting that it wasn't my first post. Apparently it was my third, so I must have posted a couple of times shortly after joining in 2014.
When I'm out and around and need a coffee, I personally 'walk right on' when i see this or a dirty steam arm or a dull dirty bean hopper etc. etc.
As it points out to me that this site either doesn't understand good coffee Or is only focused on the cash register.
I would avoid this bean supplier AS there is no guarantee that the beans in the Clear Long Dispenser are fresh and only bean ( ! there for an hour or two.
It unfortunately shows they are more interested in the decoration aspect of retailing etc etc.
Than providing the beans in their best possible condition.
Also In your post DJ you state -
" The general consensus seems to be that roasted coffee beans should be stored in an airtight container in a cool and dark place."
That container I've found is best to be a foil lined bag, rolled up tightly with all air expelled. And only introduce the minimal amount of air each and every time you open the bag to dispense beans.
Dose your beans daily for the amount required.
At this level of roasting / barista work.....its the little things (1%'s) that really ad up and allow you to get a consistent great espresso shot.
Welcome to CS, DJ. Hope you enjoy the site.
PS try Andy's beans. They're excellent. Fresh roasted to order. Reach you within days.
/|\ up top under BeanBay.
It's easy to become obsessive over this stuff, but one key thing to remember is that beans don't go stale in a day. Further to this, in the first few days after roasting, the beans are in the degassing stage and many roasters store them in these hoppers, because they allow the gas to escape readily (my local roaster does the same as yours).
Originally Posted by davejude
Also consider that your roaster is probably turning over the contents of that hopper every day, so it's a real non issue.
In the home scenario, there's absolutely nothing wrong with keeping a couple of days worth of beans in the hopper of your grinder, as long as:
1. You're using fresh beans
2. The hopper isn't in direct sunlight.
Most (not all) grinders function optimally with a weight of beans in the hopper. If you wish, purge a couple of grams of yesterday's grounds from the grinder before the first shot of the day.