Chowhound Presents: Table Talk with Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh of Sweet: Desserts from London's Ottolenghi | Ask Your Questions Now ›

Coffee & Tea

Coffee's "best before" date


Coffee & Tea 3

Coffee's "best before" date

tommy99 | Dec 8, 2007 05:40 PM

I'm hoping you can help me out. I do not profess to being a coffee connoisseur, however, I as I understand it, roasted coffee does not have an extended shelf life.

I am confused when I read that roasted coffee specialty coffee such as Kicking Horse and Starbucks has a "best before" date stamped on their bags. The thing is, they are for around July 2008 and it's only November 2007.

Now I am aware that good bags and the C02 valves allows roasted beans to be bagged right after roasting but I've always been under the impression that beans start to loose their freshness and aroma after the roast. Now I am aware that they have no been exposed to air if they aren't open, but a 9 month "shelf life" seems almost bizzare.

While most likely these beans will never reach the nine month mark I am confused about this date. Is it true that these beans will produce "good" coffee nine months from now if properly packaged or is this more of a marketing ploy to get consumers to think this is top-quality coffee since it lasts so long.

Want to stay up to date with this post?

Recommended From Chowhound