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General Product Specifications:

Physical and Chemical Parameters
Bulk Density (gm/cc) 0.220 to 0.260
Colour Range Light Brown to very dark Brown
pH - Minimum 4.70
Sediments Negligible
Fines - Maximum 25%
Metallic Admixture Nil
Foreign Particle Admixture Nil
Clarity Fair to good
Moisture - Maximum 4.00%
Total Ash - Maximum 12.00%
Caffeine - Minimum 2.80%
Solubility in Hot Water (96 C +/-2 C) Dissolves readily in 30 seconds with moderate stirring
Solubility in Cold Water (16 C +/-2 C) Dissolves readily in 180 seconds with moderate stirring

Microbiological Parameters
Parameters Unit Limit
Total Coli Form Count mpn/g <40
Yeast & Mould Count cfu/g <500
S.aureus cfu/g Absent
Total Plate Count cfu/g <500

Other Parameters
Parameters (Max) Units Limit
Lead ppm 1.000
Arsenic ppm 1.000
Cadmium ppm 0.05
Mercury ppm 0.02
Aflatoxin (BI) ppm 0.005
Mould cfu/gm 500

What is a coffee fruit?

 A coffee bean is a seed of the coffee plant and the source for coffee. It is the pit inside the red or purple fruit often referred to as a cherry. Just like ordinary cherries, the coffee fruit is also a so-called stone fruit.

 The plant is flexible and each process section is carefully designed to retain all the goodness of coffee while converting the solubles into an excellent instant brew.

 A coffee bean is a seed of the coffee plant and the source for coffee. It is the pit inside the red or purple fruit often referred to as a cherry. Just like ordinary cherries, the coffee fruit is also a so-called stone fruit. Even though the coffee beans are seeds, they are referred to as "beans" because of their resemblance to true beans. The peaberry occurs only between 10 and 15% of the time, and it is a fairly common (yet scientifically unproven) belief that they have more flavour than normal coffee

 The two most economically important varieties of coffee plant are the Arabica and the Robusta; ~60% of the coffee produced worldwide is Arabica and ~40% is Robusta.[3] Arabica beans consist of 0.8–1.4% caffeine and Robusta beans consist of 1.7–4% caffeine.[4] As coffee is one of the world's most widely consumed beverages, coffee beans are a major cash crop and an important export product, accounting for over 50% of some developing nations' foreign exchange earnings.[5]

Processing coffee

 When the fruit is ripe, it is almost always handpicked, using either "selective picking", where only the ripe fruit is removed, or "strip-picking", where all of the fruit is removed from a tree all at once. This selective picking gives the growers reason to give their coffee a certain specification called "operation cherry red" (OCR). In rare circumstances, the Asian palm civet eats coffee berries and excretes the beans. These beans are called kopi luwak, and can be processed further into a rare and expensive coffee.

 Two methods are primarily used to process coffee berries. The first, "wet" or "washed" process, has historically usually been carried out in Central America and areas of Africa. The flesh of the cherries is separated from the seeds and then the seeds are fermented – soaked in water for about two days. This softens the mucilage which is a sticky pulp residue that is still attached to the seeds. Then this mucilage is washed off with water.

 The "dry processing" method, cheaper and simpler, was historically used for lower-quality beans in Brazil and much of Africa, but now brings a premium when done well. Twigs and other foreign objects are separated from the berries and the fruit is then spread out in the sun on concrete, bricks or raise beds for 2–3 weeks, turned regularly for even drying.

"Green coffee" beans are coffee seeds (beans) that have not yet been roasted. The roasting process of coffee beans reduces amounts of the chemical chlorogenic acid. Therefore, green coffee beans have a higher level of chlorogenic acid compared to regular, roasted coffee beans. Chlorogenic acid in green coffee is thought to have health benefits. The most commonly used beans in india are

 Instant coffee, also called soluble coffee, coffee crystals, and coffee powder, is a beverage derived from brewed coffee beans that enables people to quickly prepare hot coffee by adding hot water or milk to the powder or crystals and stirring. Instant coffee is commercially prepared by either freeze-drying or spray drying, after which it can be rehydrated. Instant coffee in a concentrated liquid form is also manufactured.[1]

 Advantages of instant coffee include speed of preparation (instant coffee dissolves quickly in hot water), lower shipping weight and volume than beans or ground coffee (to prepare the same amount of beverage), and long shelf life—though instant coffee can spoil if not kept dry. Instant coffee also reduces cleanup since there are no coffee grounds, and at least one study has found that it has a lower environmental footprint than other preparation methods.[2]

Freeze-drying in the coffee industry

 Freeze-drying is a process used in food processing to remove water from foodstuffs, with the goal of increasing their shelf life. The process consists of various steps: At first product temperature is lowered, usually to about -40°C, thus causing freezing of the free water. Later, the pressure in the equipment is lowered and sublimation of the frozen water occurs (primary drying). Finally, the bound water is removed from the product, usually increasing product temperature and further decreasing the pressure in the equipment, thus reaching the target value of residual moisture (secondary drying).

 After filtration, the coffee extract is dried to get the solid soluble coffee. The liquor is frozen to about -40°C to form a thin layer that is then broken into tiny pieces. These granules are then loaded into the freeze-dryer: both batch and continuous plants are used to freeze-dry the frozen product. A batch process is used for low capacities (generally ranging from 50-7,000kg of powder per day), while a continuous process is used for large capacities (generally ranging from 7,000-25,000kg of powder per day).

freeze drying

 The basic principle of freeze drying is the removal of water by sublimation.

 Since the mass production of instant coffee began in post-WWII America, freeze-drying has grown in popularity to become a common method. Although it is more expensive, it generally results in a higher-quality product.


 The facility is equipped with the convergence of best-in-class process lines ensuring gentle handling of the product throughout the production. This includes high efficiency profile roasting, grinding, low cycle time extraction, efficient aroma recovery and gentle spray drying.

  The plant is flexible and each process section is carefully designed to retain all the goodness of coffee while converting the solubles into an excellent instant brew.

 Our knowledge together with customer interactions and feedback over years of experience resulted in ultimate knowhow on soluble coffee. 0f course, consistency in deliveries and personalized service strengthened our relationships with our customers who are our partners in progress.

  • 1. The coffee extract is rapidly frozen and is broken into small granules. (Slower freezing would lead to larger ice crystals and a porous product; it can also affect the colour of the coffee granules).
  • 2. The granules are sifted and sorted on size.
  • 3. Frozen coffee granules are placed in the drying chamber, often on metal trays.
  • 4. Therefore the quality of the product. Care must be taken to produce a vacuum of suitable strength A vacuum is created within the chamber. The strength of the vacuum is critical in the speed of the drying and
  • 5. The drying chamber is warmed, most commonly by radiation, but conduction is used in some plants and convection has been proposed in some small pilot plants. A possible problem with convection is uneven drying rates within the chamber, which would give an inferior product
  • 6. Condensation—the previously frozen water in the coffee granules expands to ten times its previous volume. The removal of this water vapor from the chamber is vitally important, making the condenser the most critical and expensive component in a freeze-drying plant.
  • 7. The freeze-dried granules are removed from the chamber and packaged.

Spray drying

A=Solution or suspension to be dried in, B=Atomization gas in, 1= Drying gas in, 2=Heating of drying gas, 3=Spraying of solution or suspension, 4=Drying chamber, 5=Part between drying chamber and cyclone, 6=Cyclone, 7=Drying gas is taken away, 8=Collection vessel of product, arrows mean that this is co-current lab-spraydryer

Spray drying is preferred to freeze-drying in some cases because it allows larger scale economic production, shorter drying times, and because it produces fine rounded particles.

The process produces spherical particles about 300 micrometres (0.012 in) in size with a density of 0.22 g/cm3.[19] To achieve this, nozzle atomization is used. Various ways of nozzle atomization can be used each having its own advantages and disadvantages. High speed rotating wheels operating at speeds of about 20,000 rpm are able to process up to 6,000 pounds (2,700 kg) of solution per hour.[20] The use of spray wheels requires that the drying towers have a wide radius to avoid the atomized droplets collecting onto the drying chamber walls.

  • ● Completed in 5–30 seconds (dependent on factors such as heat, size of particle, and diameter of chamber)
  • ● Moisture content change: IN = 75-85% OUT = 3-3.5%
  • ● Air temperature: IN = 270 °C (518 °F) OUT = 110 °C (230 °F)

One drawback with spray drying is that the particles it produces are too fine to be used effectively by the consumer; they must first be either steam-fused in towers similar to spray dryers or by belt agglomeration to produce particles of suitable size.

A batch plant consists of a cabinet with a door for product loading/unloading. In the cabinet there are various shelves: hot liquid is circulated through the system in such a way that the heat required for ice sublimation is properly transferred to the product. The frozen product can be directly loaded onto the shelves, or it can be placed onto a wagon hanging on trolleys and placed in the cabinet in such a way that product trays are positioned between the heating shelves: in this case the product is heated only by radiation from the shelves.

In case of a continuous freeze-dryer the cabinet is a long cylindrical chamber: the trays containing the product enter through an airlock system that avoids breaking the vacuum, and they are moved along the cabinet. Also in this case heat is transferred to the product using heating shelves. The product can be directly loaded onto these shelves, or it can be placed between the heating shelves as in batch plants. Both batch and continuous plants comprise a vacuum pump, a condenser for the water vapour, and a de-icing unit to melt the ice accumulated in the condenser (thus maintaining high condensing efficiency).

Process design and optimisation

With the goal of retaining all the desired characteristics (e.g. colour, appearance, shape, texture and taste) in the final product the freeze-drying process has to be properly designed, i.e. the operating conditions (the pressure in the drying chamber and the temperature of the heating fluid) have to be correctly selected. Generally, the target is to maintain product temperature below a limit value that is a characteristic of the product being processed. In doing so it is also possible to get a high specific surface area in the final product, allowing for fast and easy rehydration. Another relevant concern is the duration of the process, and the related energy requirement, which is higher with respect to that of other drying processes: about 2.5kWh are required to remove 1kg of water in a vacuum freeze-drying process, as reported by Claussen et al.1

An extensive experimental investigation, based on a trial and error approach, is usually carried out to identify the ‘optimal’ operating conditions that allow for obtaining a product with the desired characteristics. Taking into account the Guidance for Industry PAT issued by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2004 a different approach should be used to design the process: product quality has to be built into the process, or it should be by design, and no longer tested at the end of the process in the final product.

In this framework the use of mathematical modeling appears to be particularly promising: in fact, a mathematical model allows simulating in silico the evolution of the process for the selected values of the operating conditions, thus determining drying duration and product temperature without carrying out a ‘real’ cycle. Few experiments are in any case required to get the values of model parameters, but the duration of the cycle development stage is significantly reduced and, at the end of the investigation, a deep understanding of the effects of the operating conditions on product dynamics is obtained. Results are expressed by means of a diagram where the values of the operating conditions that allow obtaining a product with the desired characteristics, i.e. the design space, are put in evidence.

Occuracy of the model has to increase, moving from low and medium to high impact models.