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Green coffee is coffee that remains unroasted. Usually, the beans are picked, processed wet, dried and then milled. However, they are not roasted because that process is usually left to the end consumer. The term "green" can also refer to coffee cultivated and harvested in an environmentally friendly way, but this is a rare use of the term.
There are several advantages to green coffee over the traditional way coffee is delivered to the consumer. It is one of the freshest ways that coffee can be delivered to the consumer. The coffee beans stay fresher much longer in an unroasted state and, therefore, those coffee connoisseurs who are interested in having the freshest coffee possible will likely be more inclined to choose green beans.
Once a consumer receives green coffee, he or she must then choose a way to roast the beans in order to make it suitable for creating the beverage. Coffee can be roasted in a number of ways, many of which are very simple. Specialty equipment is available for roasting; however, there are other methods that can be used which do not require special equipment.
Roasting can also take place in a number of ways using equipment not necessarily intended for roasting coffee, but that can be adapted for that purpose. For example, it can be roasted in a stove top popcorn popper, an air popcorn popper or even an oven. In many cases, it may take no longer than 10 minutes to suitably roast the coffee beans, and many say the aroma it provides simply is one of the best smells coffee lovers could ever experience.
Green coffee can be purchased from a variety of locations. Specialty coffee shops may offer the best selection and the employees may be very knowledgeable on roasting coffee for personal use. Thus, those who are roasting beans for the first time may feel more comfortable buying their beans from such a location. The Internet is also full of online retailers offering this type of coffee for sale. Some local supermarkets may also offer a small selection.
It should be noted that because green coffee maintains its freshness much easier in its native form, the best advice may be to not roast any more than may be consumed in a day or two. Therefore, the consumer is always guaranteed of having the freshest coffee possible. Green beans will stay fresh in their unroasted form for months. However, once roasted, the beans have a much shorter time before they become noticeably less fresh. For the experienced coffee drinker, this will lead to a substandard coffee-drinking experience.