Natural or washed?
Different processing methods shape different tastes.

Discover Coffee

Natural or washed?
Different processing methods shape different tastes.



The World of Coffee 017

After growers harvest their cherries, they move on to the processing step, which turns the cherries into raw beans, ready for roasting. Depending on the processing method, or how you remove the skins and fruit from the coffee cherries,you get entirely different coffee tastes.
Here’ s some more on the two main approaches to coffee processing.

Natural (dry process)
Dry processing is the simplest, most traditional approach to processing: all you do is spread the coffee cherries out and let them dry. While dry-processed coffees were often on the outside looking in at Cup of Excellence competitions, the natural approach is now garnering attention as growers continue to take the method to the next level. When you try these beans, expect a rich sweetness and fruity aromas.

Washed (wet process)
The wet process involves mechanically removing the skin and fruit from the coffee cherries, placing the cherries in a fermenter to remove mucilage, and then performing the washing and drying steps. While the method is time- and labor-intensive, requiring the use of special equipment, it generates pure-tasting coffee with crisp, clear acidity.

Dry-processed beans and wet-processed beans from the same lot of cherries will always taste different. When you know about the impact that processing can have, you can appreciate coffee in a whole new way.