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The harvest is essential for coffee quality

Two harvesting systems are used most widely in coffee:

  • Picking: coffee picking is a manual process in which the ripe cherries are selected and picked one by one.
  • Stripping: coffee stripping is a process that may be manual or mechanized, in which all the fruit is removed in one pass when it is of average ripeness.

The next step is to extract the bean from the fruit, using a wet or dry processing method:

  • Wet processing is used for fruit harvesting and produces a coffee classified as washed or milk. A machine then removes the skin from the beans to eliminate the mucilage (pulp).

The beans are then washed and dried in the sun or in a dryer. Finally the husker eliminates the two remaining protective membranes.

  • The dry processing method produces a type of coffee known as natural. Just-harvested fruit is spread out in the air and sun for two to three weeks, then machines are used to eliminate skin, pulp, and protective membranes.
  • There is also a processing method for a semi-washed coffee and uses machines to remove both the skin and the pulp, employing water solely for washing. The beans are then dried in the sun or a dryer.