Posted in Kafevend Blog
Have you ever wondered how instant coffee is made? Neither have I, but it is perhaps important to understand how one of the most prolific means of drinking coffee is produced- what goes into it? Can I trust it? Or is it all made of deadly, deadly chemicals? Nothing like a little fear mongering to get you to check out what you're consuming.
Instant coffee is made using either the freeze drying or spray drying method. Before the coffee is processed in one of these ways however, it is first roasted; if a decaffeinated coffee is being made, it would be decaffeinated before the roasting. After roasting, the beans are finely ground and placed in hot water and a strong coffee solution is made. The ground beans are removed, and the coffee solution is used to make the instant granules.
When freeze drying, the solution is rapidly frozen and then ground up to create granules. The granules are then dried using a vacuum chamber, which removes most of the frozen water. They are then ready for packaging.
When spray drying, the solution is sprayed into a heated chamber as very small droplets. These dry into fine particles which are then formed into the larger granules using methods like steam fusing or belt agglomeration.
Freeze drying is held as the method that produces better quality instant coffee, as it preserves the original flavour better than the spray drying technique. Spray drying is a much cheaper and quicker way to produce instant coffee however.