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Coffee News
News and updates about the coffee market, coffee culture and trends, the art of coffee making and other topics related to coffee.
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Metal Coffee Drying Tables Save Forests in Kenya's Highlands

Metal Coffee Drying Tables Save Forests in Kenya's Highlands | Coffee News | Scoop.it

For more than 50 years, farmers in Central Kenya have been growing coffee as their main cash crop with little knowledge of how they were contributing to changes in the climatic conditions around Mount Kenya, the Abadares Mountains and other high altitude areas.

But today a share of Kenya's Fairtrade-certified coffee farms are gradually swapping the wooden coffee drying tables they have used for decades for metal tables - and in the process saving the highland region's large trees that are vital in protecting rainfall patterns in the region.

Since launching in 1961, the three factories of the Ndumberi Coffee Growers Cooperative Society - where more than 10,000 families take their coffee for processing and marketing - have used large wooden tables to dry their coffee cherries.

The wooden tables are constructed from strong poles as stands. Timber frames are placed on top with wire mesh on which sisal sacks or polythene paper is placed to hold the coffee cherries to dry.

Each year the factories have to cut down several mature trees to construct the wooden drying tables, which often must be replaced annually.

But now "we have realised that the factories have no more trees to cut down in order to construct the wooden drying tables", said Stanley Kihiu, the society chairman.

Another society, Rumukia Farmers Cooperative, has eight coffee factories and each of them needs five mature trees each year to construct the wooden drying tables. The society produces 3.5 million kilograms of coffee cherries each year on a total of 802 hectares of land.

"We are continuing to cut a lot of trees which we do not have at our factories. We have eight factories and each cuts down four to five big trees per year", said John Muriuki, the society manager.

And the tables don't last. Charles Muriuki, chairman of the Gikanda Farmers Cooperative, another coffee society, said wooden drying tables are quickly destroyed by termites and rain.

James Njuguna the factory manager for Rumukia Cooperative society, said wooden tables are also prone to becoming uneven, which can affect the quality of the coffee, a concern when selling to an international market.

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The 2014 Good Food Award Winners Buying Guide

The 2014 Good Food Award Winners Buying Guide | Coffee News | Scoop.it
The 4th annual Good Food Awards were awarded last night in a ceremony at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco, and Sprudge was there to bring you on the ground coverage, and bask in the glow of  New York Times food...
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Non-Dairy By the Numbers (and Taste)

Non-Dairy By the Numbers (and Taste) | Coffee News | Scoop.it

We are excited about a story featured in the upcoming February+March issue of Barista Magazine called “Got Not Milk,” written by Emily McIntyre. The article explored the constantly changing field of dairy alternatives available to baristas, their applications in coffee drinks, and their specific challenges.


Barista Devin Chapman pours a cappuccino using Pacific Natural Foods’ Almond Milk.

To preface this article (which will be available to view online at www.baristamagazine.com beginning January 31), I’d like to share with you some up-to-the-minute numbers about how regular cow’s milk compares to the most popular dairy alternatives, and also some flavor descriptors you can communicate to customers who might wonder how each of them tastes...

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Health Benefits of Drinking Coffee Infographic

Health Benefits of Drinking Coffee Infographic | Coffee News | Scoop.it

Research provides evidence that coffee intake is associated with a lower risk of dementia.

The study results indicate that individuals with mild memory impairment that drink about 3 cups of coffee per day are not going to progress to Alzheimer’s disease.

These results are consistent with other animal studies suggesting that moderate daily coffee consumption could protect against Alzheimer’s.


Via Troy Mccomas (troy48)
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Samsung puts Galaxy tablets in Illy coffee shops

Samsung puts Galaxy tablets in Illy coffee shops | Coffee News | Scoop.it

Samsung has formed a strategic alliance with coffee-company Illy, in a deal that will see the South Korean tech giant's tablet technology on display in Illy coffee shops.

The deal, announced Monday, means that some Illy shops will feature Samsung demonstration booths where you can toy with tablets such as the Galaxy Note 10.1. Samsung has also vowed to provide slightly-eerie-sounding 'Samsung Angels' to tutor customers through the gadgets' features.

Putting tablets in coffee shops sounds like a smart idea, especially for tasks like ordering drinks. The tablets I tried at Samsung and Illy's London event were lacking this feature however, and while you could use an app to see price lists or decorate a virtual Illy espresso cup using the Note 10.1's stylus (see my attempt above), you couldn't then purchase or 3D print that cup.

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All the Hidden Chemicals That Are Lurking In Your Coffee - Gizmodo

All the Hidden Chemicals That Are Lurking In Your Coffee - Gizmodo | Coffee News | Scoop.it
Caffeine. For most of us, that's the only chemical compound in coffee that's worth a damn. But that's far from the only thing that's hiding in that simmering cup of black (or light brownish) glory that you suck down every morning.

Via Christine Szalay-Kudra
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Christine Szalay-Kudra's curator insight, July 4, 2013 2:01 AM

So what is in coffee apart from water and caffeine? It might surprise you to learn more about what is in coffee. Some of the contents in your morning cup of Joe might surprise you, and I am talking about the ingredients present in tiny quantities but present nonetheless. Some of these ingredients might surprise or shock you, so take a look at this video and educate yourself about what makes coffee smell and taste the way it does.

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Coffee à la Française: The Bordeaux and Burgundy Blends at Cafe Lomi

Coffee à la Française: The Bordeaux and Burgundy Blends at Cafe Lomi | Coffee News | Scoop.it

France is known for mediocre coffee. That’s changing, with a plethora of new Parisian cafes bringing speciality coffee to the City of Light. But if you’re going to change the French palate you’ll have to start with something that they can relate to, and what better way than wine?


It’s here that you’ll find the roastery and coffee shop Café Lomi. In a town that is frequently judged – hell, scoffed at – for its lack of craft roasters, Café Lomi is a welcome gem with the coffee crowd. Nestled at the corner of a small square (Place Louis Baillot), the cafe’s tall windows overlook a wall of colorful graffiti that stretches along Rue Ordener, a visual representation of the attitude and spirit of the neighborhood.

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This Blue Bottle Cafe Is Constructed Out Of Legos

This Blue Bottle Cafe Is Constructed Out Of Legos | Coffee News | Scoop.it

The above image is a familiar scene for those who live in the Bay Area. It’s Blue Bottle Coffee’s Mint Plaza cafe, the only Blue Bottle in SF with a fully realized food menu. This gorgeous space – open, airy, tall ceilings and all – has been captured artfully in the medium of Lego.

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The First Great Specialty Cafe in Milan

The First Great Specialty Cafe in Milan | Coffee News | Scoop.it

When I was in Milan, Italy, last October for La Marzocco’s Out of the Box event, a new cafe had just opened up pretty close by called Taglio. I heard the name bandied about a whole lot the first day of the event—seems everyone was excited about it because it was, they said, the first real specialty coffeehouse in the city. That’s right—in the city of Milan.


You think coffee is so great in Italy because that’s where espresso comes from, and that’s where so many of the great espresso machine companies are based. But in fact, espresso is super different in most parts of Italy than what you’re used to at the great cafes of North America, Europe, and Scandinavia. The future is one of the most beautiful things ever—businessmen bellying up to the bar for an espresso on their way to the office, standing as they down the shot and move on.

It’s an old culture, and one that couldn’t be more different than the American 26-ounce caramel lattes culture we have in other parts of the world...


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Roast Your Own Coffee

Roast Your Own Coffee | Coffee News | Scoop.it
Roasting your own coffee is not only personally satisfying, it is relatively easy. Using nothing more than a hot air popcorn popper, you can achieve a very high level of freshness as well as being able to control your roast level.
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Startup Will Give You 'More And Better Coffee' in Exchange For Starbucks Gift Card

Startup Will Give You 'More And Better Coffee' in Exchange For Starbucks Gift Card | Coffee News | Scoop.it

Ah, Starbucks. We keep going back, but we all love to complain about it, from the lines to the shoddy coffee quality.

A new startup has taken notice and is leveraging your disappointment into its bottom line. Tonx is offering coffee subscriptions in exchange for Starbucks gift cards, which they say will result in you getting “more and better coffee,” a release from the company explains.

Ah, the Starbucks gift card—that rare gift that is lame, impersonal and incredibly useful. Who wouldn’t want one? People who don’t like fancy lattes, apparently.

“A standard $20 Starbucks gift card (which equates to three to four coffees) will magically become around 24 cups of home-brewed, fresh-roasted Tonx,” the release says.

Three coffees for $20? We’re not sure what kind of überfancy triple-shot half-soy, three-pump hazelnut, three-pump pumpkin with whip lattes Tonx is used to at those prices. But, yes, Starbucks is pretty expensive, and the 24 cups for $20 deal does sound pretty sweet.

To get the coffee, go to tonx.org/better, and plug in your gift card number and PIN. Tonx itself is a subscription coffee service that talks a big game and, judging by this video, is strictly for men in bathrobes and one woman with a floppy haircut.



Read more at http://betabeat.com/2014/01/startup-will-give-you-more-and-better-coffee-in-exchange-for-starbucks-gift-card/#ixzz2qH15HyN5 

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Coffee entrepreneur transforms lives

CNN's Ayesha Durgahee meets Andrew Rugasira, a social entrepreneur empowering coffee farmers in western Uganda. (Coffee entrepreneur transforms lives - CNN's Ayesha Durgahee meets Andrew Rugasira, a social entrepreneur...


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Starbucks Makes a Big Bet on New Product Mix in 2014

Starbucks Makes a Big Bet on New Product Mix in 2014 | Coffee News | Scoop.it

Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX  ) kicked off the new year this week with the launch of its first-ever line of VIA lattes. On Tuesday, Starbucks introduced a new Caramel Flan latte and a fresh line of Starbucks VIA Ready Brew lattes that are now available in Starbucks stores throughout the United States and Canada. Simply add water to Starbucks' new VIA Vanilla Latte and Caffe Mocha Latte packs and voila -- instant gratification. Perhaps more important, these new products underscore the wild success Starbucks has achieved with its VIA format.

A brief flashback
The java giant first launched the VIA platform of Ready Brew beverages at its U.S. stores in late 2009. By mid-2010, its VIA products had topped $100 million in global sales. By the start of 2011, VIA was the fifth-best-selling instant coffee brand by volume in the U.S., with more than 10% market share, according to AdAge.

Today, Starbucks is aggressively expanding both the product mix and distribution of its VIA platform. Its VIA Ready Brew products are now sold worldwide through a variety of channels outside of its 19,000 company-owned Starbucks locations, including grocery store chains, warehouse clubs, convenience stores, and U.S. food-service accounts...


Via Smart And Smooth
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Smart And Smooth's curator insight, January 10, 12:34 AM

As it stands, Starbucks is nearing $300 million in sales from its VIA format

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Intelligentsia Is Releasing 3 Rare Coffees You’ve Never Tried Before

Intelligentsia Is Releasing 3 Rare Coffees You’ve Never Tried Before | Coffee News | Scoop.it

After getting teased all weekend on Instagram, our friends and partners at Intelligentsia Coffee are now ready to debut a limited edition new run of reserve coffees, unveiled under the project name Café Inmaculada. This release is comprised of  three distinct and rare coffee varieties, including the “Maragesha, a spontaneous crossing of the maragogype variety with the famed gesha variety, the variety perhaps most prized by coffee enthusiasts around the world.

Café Inmaculada translates to “Immaculate Coffee”, and is a collaboration between Camilo Merizalde of the famed Finca Santuario and his childhood friends, the brothers Santiago, Andres and Julian Holguin. The program began in November 2011 in the Valle de Cauca region of southwestern Colombia, near the city of Cali, using a tiny 8 hectare plot of land belonging to the Holguin family. Together with Intelligentsia, these producers have created from scratch a brand new coffee growing project on previously untouched soil, planted intentionally with shade-giving guava trees and rare, previously commercially unavailable coffee varieties.

These five exotic coffee varieties are well-known in coffee breeding circles as genetic source material that produce exceptional cups of coffee, but are extremely rarely planted on farms because of their very low production yields. Speaking with Sprudge from Honduras, Intelligentsia green buyer and co-owner Geoff Watts told us that Cafe Inmaculada’s location – influenced by a wild temperature swing from daytime to night, and moisture-laden winds from the nearby Pacific Ocean – amounted to the ideal environmental conditions for cultivating exotic coffees.

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26 Coffee Things You Must Do Before You Die

26 Coffee Things You Must Do Before You Die | Coffee News | Scoop.it

We’re all going to die. The clock is ticking – and it’s never going to stop. Why not live for tonight? Like we might not see tomorrow?


Don’t give up just yet. There are at least twenty-six coffee things you must do before you die. Here they are.


Have more? Sound off in the comments below.

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Coffee in Gaza is a Ritual for Grief and Creativity

Coffee in Gaza is a Ritual for Grief and Creativity | Coffee News | Scoop.it

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Young Jabar Abu Houli pours coffee from a copper pot for his guests and then waits for them to finish drinking.


If they shake the empty cup or put two fingers above it, it means they are finished and do not want anymore.


If they hand him the cup in a normal manner, he will pour them more of the black coffee. This ritual takes place every morning and evening in the sitting room of the Abu Houli family home in Deir al-Balah, in the central Gaza Strip. They are one of the few families who still follow the ancient traditions associated with coffee

Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2014/01/coffee-gaza-rituals-tradition-greif.html##ixzz2qyXaoUl0


Via The Zen Parrot
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The Zen Parrot's curator insight, January 19, 5:01 PM

Coffee production in Gaza ranges from the old traditions to the latest production methods in the Badri and Haniyeh Coffee Factory, which was the second coffee production line in the Arab world, according to plant manager Mohammed Haniyeh. The first was in Algeria.

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Hipster 'American Psycho' Replaces Business Cards With Skinny Jeans, Pretty

Hipster 'American Psycho' Replaces Business Cards With Skinny Jeans, Pretty | Coffee News | Scoop.it

I have to return some video tapes... You know "Moonrise Kingdom," "Donnie Darko" and "Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind."

This hipster take on "American Psycho" is pretty much perfection. The YouTube screen might as well have a watermark on it because, well, those beards, those coffee grinds, those skinny new vintage jeans, and the blood. Oh, the blood.

The short is actually a brilliant marketing ploy by Dehnam, an innovative clothing line based in the Netherlands.

Other clothing lines could learn a thing or two from Denham, because every ad for jeans should include at least a little blood, and infinite amounts of facial hair.

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Just how big is the market for fine Robusta?

Just how big is the market for fine Robusta? | Coffee News | Scoop.it
Over the past two years, CRS has partnered with Sustainable Harvest to create Let’s Talk Robusta, a workshop series held during the importer’s annual Let’s Talk Coffee event.  After more than a decade of working almost exclusively in the realm of...
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An Escalation Of Coffee Politics Threatens Kenyan Specialty Coffee

An Escalation Of Coffee Politics Threatens Kenyan Specialty Coffee | Coffee News | Scoop.it

As coffees from Kenya’s main harvest are being readied for export, the governor of Nyeri, one of Kenya’s premiere coffee counties, is making sweeping changes to the way it trades its coffee. Governor Nderitu Gachagua has issued an order to mill and sell all of Nyeri’s coffee in Sagana, a town in the Kiryinyaga District, effectively shutting other mills down.

This raises serious questions about the government’s motives and the potential for decreasing coffee traceability and quality.


As a result, 13 co-operative societies in the region are taking the governor to court on February 10th. Gachagua’s move puts businesses like the Central Kenyan Coffee Mill in the crosshairs of the government, who are in the process of shutting this business down.

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5 Excellent Cafes In Hong Kong

5 Excellent Cafes In Hong Kong | Coffee News | Scoop.it

I was born and raised in Hong Kong, but have spent most of my adult life living in New Zealand. I wasn’t there when the specialty coffee scene kicked in. In fact, I remember coffee back home being made the same way as we’d prepare tea, sometimes mixed with sweetened and condensed milk. And then a few years ago, this started to change.

My return visits home (for the Christmas holidays and other family events) started to become full of delicious coffee, with many small specialty shops emerging throughout the city. Cafes with small roasters on site, brewing espresso and filter coffee out of world-class equipment, and offering a cafe experience as good as anything back in Auckland. It’s been a transformation, and has happened in just a few short years.

The coffee scene in Hong Kong is now very exciting, and I personally look forward to revisiting favorites and trying out new shops on each return home. Last Christmas I narrowed some of my favorites down to this list of five. I’ll be back home soon enough, and look forward to enjoying even more dramatic growth in Hong Kong’s coffee scene.

But for now, here’s five excellent cafes in Hong Kong...

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Where the world's biggest coffee drinkers live

Where the world's biggest coffee drinkers live | Coffee News | Scoop.it

America might be famous for running on coffee, but it doesn’t run on much. Not compared to a handful of other countries, anyway. When it comes to actual coffee consumption per person, the US doesn’t even crack the top 15.

For much of Europe, and especially Scandinavia, the story is quite different. In a review in 2010 about Stieg Larsson’s hit Swedish trilogy, the New York Times wrote incredulously about how the books’ scenes seemed to always revolve around endless servings of coffee:

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Coffee Set to Get Cheaper in 2014

Coffee Set to Get Cheaper in 2014 | Coffee News | Scoop.it

2014 is going to be a big year for coffee, and we’re not sure it’ll be a positive thing. A continuing oversupply of coffee around the world means that prices are continuing to drop; The Wall Street Journal reported recently that coffee prices fell 20% in 2013, which is down 49% since 2011.

You might be thinking this year’s low prices are a result of the coffee-leaf rust epidemic in South and Central America, but that’s not the case.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that decline from those areas will be compensated for by coffee production in Africa and Asia. The problem is stockpiles of coffee, and it’s worst in Brazil and Vietnam, says the USDA.
Sounds as though demand from consuming countries is pretty stagnant, while coffee production continues to swell.

“I don’t think we’ve seen the absolute low for prices,” sterling Smith, a futures specialist at Citigroup, told the Wall Street Journal. “There is a strong possibility that we will see record production in a new crop of coffee.”


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Sustainable coffee outlets face higher prices as growers address crop disease

Sustainable coffee outlets face higher prices as growers address crop disease | Coffee News | Scoop.it

Specialty coffee roasters are bracing for possible supply shortages as a destructive fungal disease known as la roya is ravaging coffee farms in Central America.

As a result, the roasters are feverishly working to educate farmers about the condition, which is also known as coffee leaf rust. The fungus affects the leaves of coffee plants, making it difficult for plants to provide proper nutrients to the cherries harvested for roasting.

A recent survey of 111 growers showed la roya has affected 85 percent of farmers. Thirty percent of those expected a 25 percent loss of crop this year. About 15 percent are expecting to lose 50 percent of crops or more.

Last harvesting season, estimates pegged la-roya-related losses in the coffee industry between $500 million and $1 billion.

In Portland and throughout the world, those numbers spell trouble for specialty coffee roasters that rely heavily on Central American imports. Though speciality coffee is a small part of the American coffee market overall, and only a portion of all coffee is sourced in Central America, specialty roasters procure about 30 percent of their high quality coffees from Central America.

"Central American coffee makes up about 40 percent of our overall coffee purchasing," said Andy Davis, marketing associate at Portland Roasting Coffee, which is preparing for similar impacts from la roya when harvest wraps up next spring. "At this point the main thing that we are doing is casting our net a little bit wider. So we are having to look for more farms that we can partner with to keep our supplies up."

Davis said long term supplies are at risk as la roya puts some small farmers out of business.

"At this point our expectation is that it's going to become more and more difficult to find the quality and quantity that we are looking for, but our way to combat that is to expand the number of farmers that we're talking to and the numbers of samples that we're trying and shipping up," he said.

Portland Roasting produces 1.2 million pounds per year and hopes to grow to 1.4 million over the next year. Adding more farmers and supplies into the operation is not without wrinkles. More beans from more farms means more work pretesting products and fine-tuning roasting techniques.

While farmers wrestle with diseased leaves, product quality and quantity of yield, specialty roasters are lending support, through involvement in the Specialty Coffee Association of America and other groups, to educational efforts targeting those farmers.

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Beautiful Art And Tough Times At Costa Rica’s Biggest Coffee Event

Beautiful Art And Tough Times At Costa Rica’s Biggest Coffee Event | Coffee News | Scoop.it

The gleaming tile floors and stout white columns gave a fittingly grand backdrop. Here at the Marriott Los Sueños, on the Playa Herradura in Costa Rica, finalists are being announced at the 27th annual Grano de Oro Art Contest. A dress constructed partially of coffee bags takes center stage, winner of that weekend’s “Ecological Fashion Show”. Welcome to Sintercafé, an annual convention put on since 1987 by a non-profit organization to promote coffee grown in Costa Rica.

“Grano de Oro” means literally means “grain of gold” or the golden bean. This distinctly Costa Rican reference to finding wealth through growing coffee harkens back to the fact that many in the country made their fortune in agriculture not mining. The disappointed conquistadores found few mineral deposits here, and those who stayed used the land as cattle ranches, to grow cacao and eventually the red and yellow coffee cherries that form the color palette across a broad swath of mixed media, including painters and photographers. Each year, artists submit pieces showcasing the “golden bean” in all its various aspects to the competition, and a jury of art experts selects the winners.

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Tech Beat: Advancements about VOCs during coffee roasting process

Tech Beat: Advancements about VOCs during coffee roasting process | Coffee News | Scoop.it

A group of German and Swiss researchers have published a study that may help shed some light on how factors like batch size and varietal type can affect the transformation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) during the coffee roasting process. Published in the Journal of Mass Spectronomy, the study is as much about spectronomy research as it is about coffee roasting, reaching extremely technical levels.

The research surrounded the use of an unbearably long-named process called resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (REMPI-TOFMS), used for fast and sensitive online monitoring of VOCs during roasting. In a practical sense, the team hoped to use REMPI-TOFMS monitoring inside an industrial roaster to determine the transient chemical signature of VOCs during roasting in real time.

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