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Preface of the International Coffee Convention 2024 (ICC2024)

The 2nd International Coffee Convention 2024 (ICC2024), scheduled for October 17-18, 2024, in Mannheim, Germany, seeks to advance the discussions from the successful ICC2023 [1,2]. This year's convention, under the theme "Coffee in Transition," focuses on pivotal aspects shaping the future of the coffee industry. It provides a platform for sharing latest research, innovative ideas, and practical solutions across several critical topics:

  • Future Landscape of Multiple Coffee Species: Addressing the reputation of "Robusta" (Canephora) and exploring other species like Racemosa and Stenophylla in light of the Nagoya Protocol.
  • Coffee Production’s Environmental Footprint: Discussing deforestation policies, advancements in fermentation techniques, and enhanced processing methods.
  • Advancements in Coffee Preparation and Business: Covering the entire spectrum from roasting techniques as well as brewing and extraction to achieving the perfect Café Crème.
  • Coffee and Health: Investigating the nutritional impacts, health benefits, and substantiation of health claims related to coffee.
  • Sustainable Utilization of Coffee By-Products: Identifying challenges and opportunities in the reuse of coffee by-products.

Participants will include academics, industry experts, and practitioners, contributing to a robust exchange of knowledge that aims to address both current challenges and future opportunities within the coffee industry. The conference will conclude with the presentation of the Kaldi Award to an individual or organization that has made a significant contribution to the coffee industry. The meeting is chaired by the following scientific committee:

  • Dirk W. Lachenmeier (Chair) (CVUA Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe, Germany)
  • Dr. María Dolores del Castillo (Spanish National Research Council, Madrid, Spain)
  • Massimiliano Fabian (Demus, Trieste, Italy)
  • Dr. Adriana Farah (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
  • Christophe Montagnon (RD2 Vision, Valflaunès, France)
  • Steffen Schwarz (Coffee Consulate, Mannheim, Germany)
  • Dr. Yves Zimmermann (Heilbronn University, Heilbronn, Germany

References

  1. Lachenmeier, D.W.; Weller, P.; Farah, A.; Ablan Lagman, Ma.C.; Fabian, M.; Del Castillo, M.D.; Schwarz, S. Shaping the Future of Coffee: Climate Resilience, Liberica’s Rise, and By-Product Innovation-Highlights from the International Coffee Convention 2023 (ICC2023). Foods 2024, 13, 832, doi:10.3390/foods13060832.
  2. Schwarz, S.; Lachenmeier, D.W. Preface of the International Coffee Convention 2023 (ICC2023). Proceedings 2023, 89, 29, doi:10.3390/ICC2023-14823.

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Comprehensive Update on European Union Labeling Standards for Coffee and Its By-Products

In the European Union (EU), the labeling of coffee and coffee by-products adheres to comprehensive regulations aimed at ensuring product transparency and consumer safety. According to Regulation (EU) 1169/2011, the mandatory particulars that must appear on coffee labels include the name of the food, the net quantity, the date of minimum durability, and the name and address of the food business operator. For coffee by-products classified as novel foods—those not recognized within the EU prior to 1997—additional stipulations under Regulation (EU) 2015/2283 require a rigorous approval process. This process involves a safety assessment and the possibility of a simplified notification procedure if the product has a history of safe use outside the EU. The already approved novel coffee by-product ingredients such as coffee leaves and cascara (dried coffee cherry pulp) must also adhere to specific labelling requirements, which dictate precise naming conventions and usage categories that align with safety standards and consumer information needs. These detailed labeling requirements are pivotal for maintaining the integrity of coffee products sold within the EU, ensuring that all items, from traditional coffee to innovative coffee by-product-based ingredients, meet the highest standards of safety and consumer information. This article describes from a practical perspective the labeling standards for coffee and coffee by-products, and points out challenges in the implementation of the regulations.

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Genetic Material Exchange: Key for the Past, Present and the Future of Coffee Cultivars Improvement

It all began with coffee seeds that crossed the Red Sea. It continued with seeds smuggled out of Yemen in various directions. One of the cultivars producing the most expensive coffees in the world went from Ethiopia to Tanzania, Kenya, Costa Rica and finally Panama, where it would become famous. Who would have thought that the main genetic solution to the devastating Coffee Leaf Rust disease would come from an unlikely natural cross between two species introduced from Africa to a little-known island in South-East Asia? It is these numerous and uncontrolled movements of plant material that have shaped the genetic improvement of the Arabica coffee plant. It is highly likely that the present and future challenges facing the coffee sector will require new exchanges of plant material. We can already see that species that could be of interest in tackling climate change are still in their African native habitat... They will have to be studied and tested in different environments... Will they be able to do this ethically and in compliance with international regulations?

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Unveiling the Risk of Coffee Consumption Associated with the Presence of Acrylamide. A Study on its Bioaccessibility

During coffee roasting, temperatures exceeding 200°C induce chemical reactions such as the Maillard reaction, altering the beans’s chemical and sensory properties. This leads to positive and negative changes, including the formation of chemical process contaminants such as acrylamide. Acrylamide exposure involves risks to consumers, emphasizing the need for its control during food processing. Strategies to reduce acrylamide during coffee roasting involve managing precursor levels in the raw materials (reducing sugars and asparagine), adjusting processing conditions (time and temperature) and utilizing different roasting technologies. Additionally, alternative methods to eliminate acrylamide after roasting have been explored. However, there is limited information regarding the bioaccessibility of acrylamide in coffee, particularly understanding the behavior of the contaminant once coffee is ingested. This aspect is crucial for accurately assessing the real risk associated with acrylamide exposure. In this context, the acrylamide bioaccessibility in different instant soluble coffees and coffee substitutes made from cereals and chicory were assessed, investigating furthermore the potential influence of mixing with milk on the bioaccessibility. Following in vitro digestion of the samples using the International Network of Food Digestibility and Gastrointestinal Health (INFOGEST) protocol, acrylamide bioaccessibility ranged between 73-90% (soluble coffees) and 78-99% (coffee substitutes). An increase in acrylamide bioaccessibility in instant chicory when samples were mixed with milk was observed, but not in the remaining samples. These results underscore the importance of exploring the interactions between acrylamide and food matrix components, as they influence its availability during the digestive process and, consequently, the final risk of exposure to the contaminant.

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Coffee Leaves Valorization Through a Metabolomic Approach
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Coffee byproducts, such as coffee leaves, are components of the coffee plant that remain underexplored. In recent years, driven by efforts from both the public and private sectors to pursue circular economy goals, there has been a resurgence of interest in coffee leaves for producing new products and diversifying the coffee supply chain. It is well known that coffee waste is a source of bioactive compounds and secondary metabolites, that find in the food and beverage sector various applications to produce functional food ingredients and nutraceuticals. Recently, coffee leaf infusions have been approved as novel food in the European Union, demonstrating the feasibility of marketing coffee leaves. To support their potential applications, it is essential to thoroughly understand the chemical composition and phytochemical profile of the byproduct to guide future investigation. Omics techniques can be used to support the valorization process, collecting a large amount of information from a complex matrix allowing the use of coffee byproduct as extraction material for the discovery and recovery of functional compounds. The simultaneous extraction of polar and non-polar fraction and the subsequent application of liquid chromatography coupled with high- or low-resolution mass spectrometry techniques, allows the simultaneous identification and quantification of several compounds through a holistic approach. Moreover, through the application of chemometrics on the spectral information it is possible to highlight the main similarities or differences of the batch that could change according to their origin or the post-harvest process as well as discover new molecules with bioactive properties. The application of omics techniques provides support for the reintegration of coffee by-products back into the production chain, reducing the impact on the environment, providing new business opportunities for farmers and companies.

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Metabolomic Profiling of Cultured-Yeast and Spontaneously Fermented Coffees

Coffea arabica and C. canephora with all varieties make up for the largest share of cultivated coffee worldwide, whereas the C. liberica species only represents a minor proportion. This is mainly because the taste profiles of C. canephora and C. liberica varieties are typically less popular than those of C. arabica coffees. However, with evolving coffee fermentation methods, the sensory profiles of the three coffee species advance into more complex profiles with less off-flavors and as such, alter this traditional distribution. Pure culture yeasts partially suppress the growth of unwanted microorganisms and alter the composition of organic precursor compounds, which ultimately leads to better, more favorable sensory profiles of the roasted coffee. This substantially boosts the quality of so far less popular Coffea species. Our study describes a cross-platform metabolomic approach for the evaluation of the changes of the sensory metabolome of green and roast coffees. The approach is designed in a comprehensive manner for the volatile fraction (“volatilome”) and the soluble fraction (classical metabolome). For the analysis of the volatilome, GC-MS, as well as GC-IMS was utilized. The non-volatile compounds were analyzed and tentatively identified with LC-HRMS, paired with metabolomic tools. First results of the volatilomics platform showed a substantial difference in the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) profile of controlled fermented and wild fermented coffees. Preliminary orthogonal analyses based on non-targeted HPLC-ESI-HRMS tentatively allowed for the identification of individual substance groups that showed process-specific formation or breakdown during controlled coffee fermentation. The data of all platforms was evaluated and compared. Through this, a holistic and complementary view of the volatile and non-volatile metabolome of cultured-yeast and spontaneously fermented coffees was accomplished. This talk presents a direct comparison of the metabolomic analysis of different types of fermentation approaches of coffees, as well as first results of the metabolomic platform will be shown. An outlook to the future and the relevance of fermentation for flavor enhancement of coffee will be given.

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Coffee Challenges 2024
Published: 25 June 2024 by MDPI in International Coffee Convention 2024 session Coffee in Transition

During 2024, the coffee sector is dealing with several challenges such as implementing the new European Union (EU) deforestation regulation, the proposed reclassification of dichloromethane, the strong increase of the prices of green coffee and the effects of the sustainability due diligence directive. All these aspects can lead to lack of availability of product on the market and have a strong influence on prices for the consumers.

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Regional Variations in Italian Coffee Culture: Historical Influences and Contemporary Preferences for Robusta-Arabica Blends

Coffea canephora, or Robusta, plays an important role in the Italian coffee scene, particularly in the preparation of espresso, contributing to the coffee's intense flavor and rich crema. But why do Italians prefer this type of coffee? Why does this preference not emerge in the same way in neighboring countries such as Germany, France, Austria, and even Spain? And why are there so many differences in coffee tastes among regions within Italy? The northern part of the country prefers lighter and longer coffees with a major presence of Arabica, while southern regions prefer shorter and darker coffees with a larger presence of Robusta. This kaleidoscopic coffee culture traces back to historical events linked to the introduction of coffee beans in Italy and to its varied regional landscape. Within the folds of history lie the origins that have shaped the Italian coffee identity. This journey presents an intriguing case study.

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Decoding Coffee Cardiometabolic Potential: Structure-Health Function Relationships

Coffee brew is a widespread beverage in human diet with several recognized health benefits. However, the relationship between the chemical portfolio of molecules present in coffee and their bioactive function is still overlooked. One of the compounds most prevalent in coffee brew are the soluble fibers, composed by arabinogalactans and galactomannans polysaccharides, and melanoidins, which may influence cholesterol metabolism. Arabinogalactans and galactomannans polysaccharides rich fractions as well as coffee extracts were shown to decrease cholesterol bioaccessibility, due to their capacity to sequestrate bile salt. Furthermore, coffee extracts with distinct roasting degrees were shown to affect the bioavailability of a cholesterol through Caco-2 cell line model, decreasing sterol permeability, which was attributed to an increased sterol precipitation and its deposition on the apical epithelial surface. Arabinogalactans and melanoidins rich fractions were also evaluated regarding the outcome of their fermentability. Both fractions decreased the acetate: propionate ratio, which is indicative of a potential HMG-CoA reductase inhibition. Melanoidin rich fraction also show to decrease the conversion of primary to secondary bile salts, the latter known to be more prone to emulsify cholesterol, impacting on cholesterol bioaccessibility and bioavailability. This study demonstrates that coffee exhibits cardioprotective properties, suggesting potential for developing functional food ingredients from coffee extracts to combat cardiovascular diseases, among the leading causes of death globally.

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Enhancing Competitiveness of Coffee Growers in Ituango, Colombia, through Science, Technology, and Innovation: “The Coffee Grower's Laboratory Initiative"
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Different actors have observed divergences and imbalances related to quality understanding and value appropriation in the coffee value chain. Reducing this gap and ensuring sustainability requires innovative strategies. The "Coffee Grower's Laboratory" in Ituango, Colombia, was established to enhance local coffee farmers' capacities in science, technology, and innovation. Over 13 participatory methodologies were developed with design thinking to facilitate knowledge exchange between the farmers´ traditional expressions and international commercial practices. Key methodologies included brand co-creation (Artesanato), roast curves (Anatomy of Roasting), roaster operation (The Roaster’s Journey), understanding beans (Know the Bean), and coffee tasting (Deliciousometer). Additionally, methodologies for strengthening intra and interpersonal skills, such as self-care (Crossing the River) and empowerment (The Four Pillars of Trust), were included. Altogether 302 coffee farmers participated. We co-created a community brand, Itucafé, promoted on social media to highlight the farmers' traditions and innovations nationally and internationally. Farmers, who previously sold only washed parchment coffee, now process, taste, and sell their coffee directly to buyers. Selling directly to buyers increased coffee growers' profits to around 50% through the "Coffee Grower's Laboratory", compared to the less than 10% they earned previously. They also experiment with new fermentations using local fruits, creating unique sensory profiles for more competitive pricing. The " Coffee Grower's Laboratory" has strengthened the coffee community's capabilities and competitiveness, enhancing the visibility and recognition of Ituango coffee. It provides an ideal environment for continuous training and producer-buyer relationships, serving as a replicable model for other coffee-producing regions in Colombia.

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