After carefully selecting the beans, the coffee production chain continues.
In coffee production areas, a final and essential step is yet to be carried out: the packaging of green beans and their subsequent shipping by sea in containers to the countries where they are marketed. As for Attibassi, the coffee bags will be sent to Co.ind’s roasting plant in Castelmaggiore (Bologna), where another long and rigorous process begins, involving, among other steps, the roasting of beans and the creation of the blends that have made Attibassi well-known worldwide.
After final packaging, when all the blends are already sorted according to each variety, coffee suppliers and retailers for cafés will begin selling the company’s products to all cafés interested in offering their customers excellent Italian coffee.
The importance of coffee packaging in warehouses
Although we tend to think that coffee quality lies exclusively in the specific characteristics of each variety or in the seed extraction and sorting techniques, we should bear in mind that its packaging and shipping to the countries where it is marketed is a fundamental step: in fact, if coffee beans are not properly stored during initial storage, they could absorb too much moisture, which would negatively affect the quality and taste of coffee.
The moisture content of the rooms where the beans are left “to rest” must necessarily be lower than 50%.
The green beans are transferred into 60kg standard bags made of jute or sisal: such fabrics allow coffee to be stored, but also prevent excessive moisture from entering: at this stage, the product has a moisture content of around 11-12%.
This protection from external agents, such as moisture, heat and sunlight, makes it possible to extend the shelf life of the product, i.e. its expiry date, therefore preventing the early oxidation and ageing of coffee beans (which, in jargon, is known as fading).
For specific types of coffee, other types of bags can be used as packaging in addition to jute or sisal: for example, plastic bags, which can be closed with a plastic strip, to be inserted inside jute bags.
Alternatively, plastic bags with a kind of resealable zip can be used, which allow the bag to be hermetically sealed after releasing excess air. In this case too, the plastic bag must be put inside the jute bag.
Shipping coffee to the countries where it is marketed
The bags packed with coffee are placed in ventilated containers, with little moisture, and are then shipped on different routes leading to the countries where they are marketed. Shipping can also take place “in bulk”, in bulk containers: these large containers are suitable for containing loose goods, with rigid plastic inner receptacles.
The procedure involves emptying the bags in tanks and transferring them through vacuum tubes into containers covered in film, jute or other durable packaging. The goods undergo double inspections: the beans are weighed before being shipped and when they arrive at their destination in order to check if there has been any weight loss during the journey and to make sure that the sea trip did not affect the properties of coffee in any way.
On arrival at the destination, the coffee beans are sorted to be sent to the roasting plants.
From now on, Co.ind, the Bologna-based company that produces Attibassi coffee, with more than 50 years of experience in the coffee industry, will be actively involved. While up to now processes had to be monitored only remotely – while ensuring high production standards – from the moment the coffee arrives at the roasting plant, the company will be involved directly.
Once the coffee arrives at the roasting plant, it undergoes tasting tests and chemical-physical analysis is performed at the company’s laboratories. In particular, the coffee is selected and divided according to its origin: this will allow roasting profiles to be adjusted for each single-origin product, ensuring perfectly even roasting for all beans.
The complex roasting process involves the use of sophisticated machinery along with the presence of highly qualified personnel: thanks to the combination of these two elements, the beans acquire the characteristic brown colour that is typical of roasting, avoiding unpleasant burning that negatively affects the taste of coffee.
The meticulous attention given to the roasting curve is what makes Attibassi’s blends unique.