Organic farming practices date back to the beginning of agriculture and serve as a way to balance the use of land and resources with ecological preservation. However, it was not until the 1990s that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) defined, standardized, and regulated organic farming practices. Now, the USDA organic label is something that many coffee drinkers seek out. But what is organic coffee? And what benefits of organic coffee attract coffee lovers? In this guide, we dive into organic vs. non-organic coffee and help you find the perfect brew to start your day.
What is organic coffee?
To use the term "organic," coffee must be USDA Organic-certified and meet rigorous organic growth and supply chain management standards. The types of fertilizers and sprays applied to the coffee are restricted to only natural and organic ones, such as neem oil, compost, and manure. Insecticides like glyphosate are not allowed, nor are other synthetically derived herbicides or fungicides. Organic coffee farmers prioritize biodiversity, sustainability, and community through ecologically and socially responsible farming practices.
Is all coffee organic?
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages across the globe. In 2020 and 2021, nearly 10 billion kilograms of coffee were consumed worldwide. The average per capita coffee consumption in the United States is shy of 2 cups per day. The high demand for coffee has led to various farming practices that help farmers keep up with the demand and provide greater yields. Many of these practices are non-organic because they rely upon synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides to protect the crop and ensure a bountiful harvest. Thus, not all coffee is organic. On the flip side, it is also important to note that some non-certified organic farmers use organic farming practices. However, to be sure grounds or beans are organic, look for the USDA Organic logo.
What are the differences between organic and non-organic coffee?
The main difference between organic and non-organic coffee is the use of chemicals. Non-organic coffee uses synthetic chemicals like glyphosate to maximize the yield of coffee plants. Organic uses natural chemicals like neem oil and copper sulfate to protect the plants. Non-organic farmers use artificial fertilizers like synthetic gypsum, and organic farmers use naturally derived fertilizers like cow and chicken manure. Additionally, organic coffee follows more rigorous labor practices and leaves a lower environmental impact than non-organic coffee.
7 Benefits of Organic Coffee
Organic coffee delivers notable benefits, many of which are the same as the benefits of regular coffee, too.
- Less Chemical Exposure - Compared to non-organic grown coffee, organic coffee generally has lower levels of chemical residues, which benefits those concerned about the potential health risks associated with chemical exposure.
- Rich in Antioxidants - All coffee is rich in antioxidants that prevent cells from being damaged by free radicals that can lead to numerous diseases and accelerate aging. This helps reduce inflammation and promotes overall well-being.
- Boosts Metabolism - The caffeine in coffee stimulates the nervous system to instruct fat cells to break down fat and release fatty acids into the blood. Caffeine can also increase a person's metabolic rate, which is the rate at which a person burns calories at rest.
- Rich in Micronutrients - Coffee contains micronutrients such as trace amounts of potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, folate, choline, and sodium.
- Boosts Energy - Everyone knows coffee is excellent for an energy boost, but what is the science behind it? The caffeine in coffee blocks the receptors of the adenosine neurotransmitter, which increases neurotransmitters like dopamine that regulate energy levels.
Where to Buy Organic Coffee
At San Francisco Bay Coffee, we are passionate about providing you with the freshest, most flavorful organic coffee experience. Any San Francisco Bay Coffee labeled Organic and all coffees under our Organic Coffee Co. line are certified organic by the United States Department of Agriculture. Our organic coffee flavors include Java Love, French Roast, Breakfast Blend, Hurricane Espresso, Sumatra Mandheling, Zen Blend, and more. Our organic beans are carefully selected and roasted to perfection, ensuring an unforgettable taste with every sip. To find the perfect organic coffee for you, visit our shop today.