British Coffee Association welcomes Government moves over coffee fraud
The British Coffee Association (BCA) has welcomed Government moves to further clampdown on ‘adulterated coffee’.
The Government has said that with a high market value and commercial importance coffee is in the top 10 products most at risk of food fraud.
Last week, an updated paper from The Government Chemist and Queen's University Belfast highlighed the current difficulties in the authentication of coffee and reviewed the methods for coffee bean authenticity testing. This follows an original paper from 2017, which reviewed the major issues affecting coffee including the substitution of the more expensive Arabica with cheaper beans and the use of cheaper materials such as coffee husks, chicory, and cereal grains.
The update has reviewed the driving factors for the commercial adulteration of coffee and found:
- dilution: adulteration of coffee with cheaper materials such as coffee husks, chicory, cereal grains, woody tissue, cocoa or soya beans, acai berries or exogenous sugars
- incorrect geographic origin stated in label
- substitution of the more expensive Arabica with cheaper beans
- authenticity of Kopi Luwak coffee (coffee produced from beans digested by civet cats)
Despite the update the BCA said that there is no evidence to suggest that this is widespread problem.
The BCA told Beverage Business World: “The BCA welcomes the updates to the paper which includes a review of the driving factors for commercial adulteration of coffee. Supply chain integrity remains a key priority for the UK coffee industry.
“Coffee drinkers can be reassured that currently there is no evidence to suggest that any level of coffee adulteration takes place in the vast majority of products that consumers buy and enjoy drinking every day in the UK.”
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