What type of coffee bean has the Most, Average, Least caffeine content?

What type of coffee bean has the Most, Medium, Least caffeine content?

Caffeine is one of the most highly consumed substances because of its presence in coffee, over 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed in the world daily. Because caffeine is a psychoactive substance it has led to a lot of questions as to how much caffeine is within coffee beans.

Each species of coffee bean plant usually contains a different amount of caffeine than the other.

This blog post is to inform you of how much caffeine is in a coffee beans.

Coffee beans

Coffee Beans

While there might be 100's of various species of coffee plants, only two are majorly discussed as they make up for 98% of coffee in the world.

There's caffeine in every part of each. 

coffee plant but caffeine is majorly stored in the coffee bean.

The coffee plant uses this caffeine to serve as a means to fight against pests. This is because caffeine is dangerous to most pests hence making caffeine a natural pesticide.

Determiners Of Concentration Of Caffeine:-

  • Species of the coffee plant
  • Light roast or dark roast 
  • Brewing Method

  • The two major species of coffee plant are:-

  • Arabica
  • Robusta

  • Arabica coffee beans

    Arabica coffee

     Arabica makes up 60-70 percent of coffee produced in the world. It has a high amount of sugar and oil but it has less caffeine which is one of the main causes of bitterness.

     Arabica bean is a popular coffee bean due to its sweet and fruity flavor. 1.9 milligrams of caffeine are found in one unroasted Arabica coffee bean.

    The Arabica species has to grow on higher altitudes which rarely contain pests hence increasing the amount of coffee bean produced by this species. This high altitude also causes slow ripening of the coffee cherries which increases the quality of coffee produced from this plant.

    Robusta coffee beans

    Robusta coffee

    Robusta is the easiest to farm among coffee plants and it also produces a large amount of yield. 

    The major difference between Robusta and Arabica is the amount of caffeine.

    Each Robusta coffee bean contains twice as much caffeine that is found in each Arabica bean.

    Hence the amount of caffeine found in one Robusta bean is 2.9 milligrams. The Robusta species is known to survive at any level, even the sea, due to the high amount of caffeine found in it.

    The coffee bean from which the coffee grind is extracted isn't the only reason for the amount of caffeine in coffee.

    light to dark roast coffee

    Another reason is Light Roast or Dark Roast.

    A cup of dark roasted coffee contains more caffeine than a cup of lightly roasted coffee.

    This is because during the roasting process as coffee gets darker it loses mass but the caffeine content doesn't reduce.

    Hence more dark roasted beans are needed to fill up a scoop, so the extra quantity that's added makes for more caffeine in each scoop of dark roasted coffee bean.

    So if you measure 1 gram of light and dark roasted coffee, the dark roasted coffee will have more caffeine because it's less dense so you'll have more dark roasted coffee beans.

    Types of coffee

    Brewing Method

    Each coffee drink contains different amounts of caffeine, this is due to the brewing process.

    Espresso contains the highest amount of caffeine which is why it is served in smaller portions. For each ounce of Espresso, you get 40-55mg of caffeine.

    Decaffeinated coffee

    Decaffeinated coffee

    While most of the caffeine is removed in Decaffeinated coffee, traces of caffeine remain. Though, Decaffeinated coffee still contains the least amount of caffeine.

    There are regulations in every country regarding a certain percentage or minimum caffeine content coffee should contain to be considered Decaf.

    In Canada, the coffee has to be 99.7% caffeine-free to be considered Decaf.

    European, New Zealand, and Australian regulations do specify that for any coffee to be considered Decaf it has to be 99.9% free of caffeine.

    In the US, the coffee must be 97% caffeine-free or else it can not be considered Decaffeinated

    Coffee decaffeination processes:

    There are various decaffeination processes but one thing they have in common is that for coffee to be decaffeinated it has to be in its unroasted state.

    The four processes used in Decaffeination today are grouped into:-

    Solvent-based processes: Under this process we have:

    1. Indirect solvent process
    2. Direct solvent process

    In this process, the caffeine is removed from the bean with a chemical solvent. 

    Indirect solvent process:- The coffee bean in almost boiling water, extracts the caffeine and other elements from the bean. In this process, the water-filled with caffeine is transferred to a tank and treated with a chemical solvent. Then reintroduced to the beans which absorb the elements back.

    Direct solvent process:- In this process, the bean is first of all steamed to open its pore it is then directly soaked in the solvent. The caffeine-filled solvent is then drained away.

    Non-solvent based processes:- Under this process we have

    1. Swiss water process
    2. Carbon Dioxide process 

    Swiss water process: In this process, the bean is soaked in hot water to drain the caffeine. The water is then passed through an activated charcoal filter that only allows small amounts of oil and flavours to pass through.

    The beans are discarded and the flavour-filled water is used to remove caffeine from another set of coffee beans.

    Carbon Dioxide process: In this process water soaked coffee bean is placed in an extraction vessel. Liquid carbon dioxide is then forced into the coffee. 

    The liquid carbon dioxide then dissolves and draws caffeine from the coffee bean leaving the flavour behind.

    There is one naturally low caffeine coffee bean which is Laurina. It is a strain of Arabica, it contains one-fifth of the amount of caffeine in Arabica.

    Due to the low amount of caffeine in this plant, it falls prey to a lot of disease and pests and it also produces low yields when growing in the wild.

    These two factors are the reason why it is not really common and also costs a lot more than Arabica and Robusta coffee beans.

    The Laurina coffee bean is gradually coming back into the spotlight although the price is still high due to low supply, it is the recommended coffee bean type if you want to drink coffee with a low amount of caffeine.

    Summarily, it is important to pay attention to the amount of caffeine you consume per day. While coffee might be a gift from the above there are repercussions that come with too much caffeine consumption