The Different Types of Coffee Beans Available on the Market Today

Whether you are the early riser who needs that cup of java to get the day started, or you are the worker who needs a mid-afternoon boost of energy, most who drink coffee prefer their cup of joe to have a specific taste. 

The taste of your coffee is dependent on several factors: the types of coffee beans used, length of roast, and added ingredients like milk, sugar, honey, etc. 

The 5 Types of Coffee Beans

Traditionally, we’ve known the different coffee bean varieties to be arabica, robusta, liberica, and excelsa, but recently green coffee beans have been added to the list. 

#1: Green Coffee Beans 

The brown color of coffee beans that we are familiar with seeing, is due to roasting. Green coffee beans have not been roasted yet, therefore they retain their green color. 

Roasting is what gives coffee beans their flavor as well. You’d think there wouldn’t be much value or point in not roasting the beans, but there is. 

It is said that everything in moderation, even coffee, can provide health benefits. In this specific case, green coffee beans provide even more health benefits than roasted coffee bean varieties do. 

In their raw state, green coffee beans contain Chlorogenic Acid (CGA). 

CGA is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compound. It can be beneficial for decreasing blood pressure and weight loss. Once roasted, coffee beans lose their higher levels of potent CGA. 

Green coffee bean extract is known to provide increased energy as well.

Before roasting, coffee beans are quite bland. Meaning, you can add the extract of green coffee beans to just about any drink. It is recommended for use in citrus beverages for the best taste.

If you are the type of person who is not too keen on the taste of a regular cup of coffee, but still in need of an energy boost, green coffee bean extract may be the option for you. 

#2: Arabica 

This coffee bean is by far the most popular in the world market. It’s potentially popular because of its low acidity. 

The trees of this bean grow in high-altitudes with lots of shade and rainfall. They are typically short, which makes it a lot easier to harvest.

The arabica tree does not do well in mass production. When grown outside of their typical environment, it takes even more effort to produce a healthy yield than if they were grown in their home environment. 

They happen to be extremely prone to disease. This means growing them in mass production doubles the effort of the farmer to prevent the entire plot from experiencing a massive outbreak of disease.

When roasted, the bean is bursting with a bright body of multiple flavors.   

#3: Robusta

The second most produced coffee bean in the world is robusta. 

The robusta tree can take on a lot and is immune to most plant-based diseases. It doesn’t mind the altitude, but it prefers to live somewhere with lots of heat and little rain. 

Robusta is bursting with caffeine, which helps the tree defend itself against disease. Due to the higher yield of caffeine, it is more acidic than arabica. It’s known for having hints of chocolate within its taste. 

Because robusta grows well in many different environments and has a high caffeine yield, it is sold at a lower cost than arabica typically is.

#4: Liberica

This coffee bean variety only grows in the Philippines. It has a special place in the history of coffee beans too. 

In 1890, there was a shortage of arabica beans due to a disease called coffee leaf rust. Close to 90% of the world’s stock of arabica was affected. 

All around the world, they turned to the liberica plant, of which the Philippines was the sole producer of. 

During this time, the Philippines was still a U.S. territory. A quarrel between the two pushed the Philippines to declare independence.

This event caused the Philippines to be cut off from all supplies the U.S. provided, meaning the liberica plant was also cut off from world markets.

When liberica returned to world markets in 1995, arabica was the reigning sovereign of the coffee market. This is why the liberica coffee bean is a little harder to come by today. 

Liberica is known for having more smoky and wood-like flavors. The tree can grow up to 30 ft tall.

#5: Excelsa

Recently excelsa was re-named as a genus of liberica because it grows on trees that are 20-30 ft tall. It even grows in similar altitudes, primarily in Southeast Asia. 

Unlike liberica’s smoky flavors, excelsa is known for a fruity and tart like flavor.

It only makes up 7% of the world’s coffee market and is primarily used in blends to add a boost of fruit flavor. 

The Difference Between Types of Roasts

As previously explained, green coffee beans lack any roasting and are used in beverages by way of extract. So what is the difference between light, medium, and dark roasted coffee beans? 

The longer a bean is roasted determines how much oil is drawn out of the bean. The more oil drawn out, the less caffeine and acidity there is in the bean. 

Light roasts will have the highest acidity yield and dark roasts will have the lowest acidity yield.

If you are looking for a more caffeinated drink, you want a lighter roast. On the contrary, you could use green bean coffee extract for the highest potency of caffeine in your beverage of choice. 

Finding Your Dream Coffee Bean

Now that you know the difference in flavor the different types of coffee beans provide, you can start exploring which roast, or lack of roast, gives you the desired booster you need in your beverage. 

If you have always been a dark roast in the afternoon kind of person, try exploring the variety of roasts out there. Maybe green bean coffee extract in orange juice will be the proper pick me up you need.

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