Counterfeit Coffee is a Thing, and Here’s Why You Should Worry

Counterfeit Coffee

You should start taking your  coffee with two cream and one spoon of suspicion, because your coffee may not be what you think it is.

/READ MORE// Make the Perfect Cup of Coffee with This Chart

In a story by the The Washington Post, there is a new testing method for coffee beans, which, according to the creators of the test, double checks that the name on the packaging actually matches the type of beans you get.  Although current tests can easily identify the types of coffee beans in each package, the new method is both more precise and faster.

The reason this test was created was because coffee is, apparently, becoming an increasingly popular target for ‘food counterfeiters’.   What makes coffee different from other counterfeit food issues is that there are multiple methods being used to forge real coffee.  Like salmon and other fish, coffee has an ongoing issue with mislabelling.  Coffee also suffers from an issue involving diluting the better strains of coffee with cheaper, more readily available varieties, such is the case in olive oil.

There is, however, a common thread within the recent flare-ups in food counterfeiting.

Like many foods, at least part of the cause is climate change.  Coffee is particularly susceptible to droughts, which has been the case in much of the coffee-producing world, most notably Brazil.  Given the weather, climate, and what was occurring on global food markets and coffee farms late 2017, many experts sounded the alarm that a global coffee shortage was coming.

Not If, but When.

With stores of coffee tightening due to the looming shortage, ever-rising prices, and a growing emphasis on speciality coffees, especially in the western world, it’s no surprise that counterfeit coffee is becoming a bigger problem – one that needs faster and easier testing.


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