The best way to store your coffee, experts weigh in. Pexels
The best way to store your coffee, experts weigh in. Pexels

The best way to store your coffee

By Lutho Pasiya Time of article published Feb 17, 2019

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Did you know that the way you store your morning cuppa coffee could impact its taste? 

We spoke to coffee experts about the best ways coffee can be stored to keep it fresh.  

Founder of Gold Mountain Coffee Growers, Benjamin Weiner said coffee storage is one key to enjoying a fresh morning cup of coffee at its full potential of course.

Weiner’s tips

Whole beans

Buy coffee as whole beans from a specialty coffee roaster, not ground. Ground coffee's particles are more exposed to oxygen and therefore go stale within just fourteen minutes. By the time you get ground coffee home from the store, it's stale. Keep it fresh by investing in a coffee grinder. 


Keep your coffee in a hundred percent air-tight container, such as a locking Tupperware container or simple jar. This will prevent oxygen from making your coffee go stale.

If your coffee shows oils, it is over-roasted. When you taste oil-filled coffee you are tasting the roast, not the beans themselves and all the hard work farmers put into growing your coffee.

One month

Only buy enough coffee to last one month, and then buy more. Roasters who are worth their weight in salt will put a roast date on the bag so you can ensure to only use coffee that is one month old or less. If you like espresso, you can keep using the coffee for a month-and-a-half, but we wouldn't suggest going too far beyond that if you would like to bring out all all the beautiful flavors that are naturally present in your coffee. 

Director of Coffee, Dylan Cumming said freshness is a key attribute in the enjoyment of a cup of coffee. 

Cumming's tips

Buy locally grown and locally roasted coffee.

There is a number a farmers currently growing coffee in South Africa, both farms established in the 80’s to ones having planted within the last three years. Search them out and support our local coffee farmers.

Buy coffee that has been well packaged. 

Look for coffee that has been packaged with either in foil or aluminium and in the case of flexible packaging look for the “bellybutton” or one- way valve.

Starbucks Ops Service Manager South Africa, Ishan Natalie said coffee is a ‘living’ product until consumed. He said when coffee is roasted, bi-gasses are developed which keeps the coffee fresh and helps transport aroma – this is carbon dioxide and that this gas and freshness of coffee is extremely important as it is responsible for the enjoyment of coffee.

Ishan’s tips

Use whole bean coffee

Whole beans trap the carbon dioxide gases for more flavour and enjoyment. Ground coffee releases the carbon dioxide and reduces freshness.

Use an airtight container or properly sealed coffee bag with a one way valve

Cool storage

Coffee when roasted has developed sugars and water soluble flavour oils natural in the coffee. It also contains a small level of moisture to help absorb water for saturation and extraction of the flavour, taste and tactile composition of coffee. Warmth and sunlight will extract and destroy all these important elements.

Store coffee away from products with high aromatics that can be absorbed into the coffee and distort the flavour. Coffee absorbs any aromatics or contaminants in comes into contact with.  

Never store coffee in a fridge or freezer. Yes product stay fresher in the fridge or freezer as it preserves freshness, however, every time you take a bag of coffee out of the fridge into room temperature, the condensation that builds up in such moist environments, liquify and is absorbed into the coffee.   

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