Coffee is very much a seasonal product and many people aren't aware that it has a limited shelf life. Freshly roasted coffee beans tend to last for 4-6 weeks while green coffee beans can last a lot longer. Many of our coffees are vacuum packed to ensure we get as much life out of the beans as possible. With many of these coffees it's possible to maintain freshness for up to 12 months. Our other coffees are packaged in grainpro plastic sacks and this is also a very good method for helping to ensure freshness.
Our range of coffees changes over the course of the year and we work very hard to ensure we serve coffees that are still fresh and seasonal. Coffees that show signs of age tend to be woody in flavour and lack brightness. In order to ensure we buy coffees that aren't going to age too quickly we use a water activity meter from Rotronic. This device helps us to predict the potential shelf life of the coffee. Green coffee samples that have not been processed and dried correctly can taste great when very fresh but by the time they are shipped over to the UK they can already show signs of age when they arrive. You can read more about coffee and water activity measurements via this link.
Cafe Imports have published an excellent coffee harvest schedule showing the harvest dates of coffee beans around the world. We've attached the image below and you can also read a bit more information on the Cafe Imports website. Some origins will harvest for a very short period of time while others might be able to harvest and produce coffee almost all year. Our coffees from Rwanda tend to be harvested and dried from April to June while the coffees we buy from Colombia could have been harvested at virtually any time of year.
Because coffee is a seasonal product there will be times of year when certain origins might not be available or our offering might be a bit limited. If you can only see a few coffees available to purchase on the site this is because we are waiting or preparing new coffees for release within the coming weeks.