COMMERCIAL vs. GOURMET COFFEE
Gourmet coffee is made from Arabica Beans. These are the most flavorful
beans. Commercial coffees are made from a mixture of Arabica and
Robusta, and usually low grade Brazilian beans.
Robusta and Brazilian beans are cheaper than Arabica beans, so
the large commercial coffee manufacturers tend to use these beans
in their blends and add a few Arabica beans for flavor. When the
coffee prices go up, the commercial manufactures tend to use less
of the Arabica bean in their mixture. Robusta beans also contain
thirty to forty percent more caffeine than the Arabica bean.
Another disadvantage with commercial coffee is the freshness. The
coffee sits on the shelf for more than two weeks and it may take
a week or more to get to the stores shelves after it has been packaged.
Once in the store, the coffee is not rotated. The coffee in the
back of the shelf may have been there for several months. The longer
the coffee sits on the shelf, the staler and more bitter it becomes.
The major advantage of the commercial coffee is the price. It is
definitely less expensive than the Gourmet coffees.
Gourmet coffee is roasted and sold within a one week period. It
is usually sold in the whole bean form. This way it retains its
flavor until you decide to brew it. Unlike commercial coffees, you
can choose origin (Sumatra, Kona, etc..) and the type of roast (French,
Italian, Light, etc..). Gourmet coffees offer the consumer more
choices than the commercial manufacturers. The major advantage of
gourmet coffees is flavor.