Exploratory evaluation of dry fermentation of specialty coffee from Nariño-Colombia, -using wet and honey-like methods





The aim of this investigation was to compare the quality of coffee produced by dry fermentation using wet and honey-type methods in three farms located in southwestern Colombia through an ex post facto study. Specialty coffee was produced and studied according to a post-harvest protocol that utilized traditional practices. The study revealed that the quality of coffee is primarily affected by postharvest processing (57.6%) and the coffee farm (37.9%). The honey-like processing method employed on La Mina farm obtained the highest overall quality score, as determined by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). The variation in the cup quality occurred due to the variation in the different attributes. The overall impression, fragrance/aroma, body, and flavor were the primary contributors to the total score quality variance (34.9%), whereas acidity, aftertaste, and balance accounted for 26.1% of the total variance. Regarding the environmental, physicochemical, and microbiological parameters, the principal component analysis showed that the bottom temperature (BT), surface temperature (ST), middle temperature (MT), aerobic mesophilic bacteria (AMB), and °Bx accounted for 29.5% of the variance. Also, yeast, pH, LAB, and AAB accounted for 27.3% of the total variance. The highest correlation with the final cupping score was recorded for MT, ST, environmental temperature (ET), BT, Enterobacteria, and relative humidity (RH). Pre-fermentation was found to increase the microbial count, and longer dry fermentation durations of depulped coffee promoted the growth of beneficial microbial populations. The process revealed interesting relationships between temperature-AMB and degrees Brix (°Bx), and between yeast-lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and acetic acid bacteria (AAB).

Key words: Coffea arabica; Postharvest coffee processing; Wet and honey methods; Dry fermentation; Quality coffee.


ASWATHI, K. N. et al. Metagenomics and metabolomic profiles of Coffea canephora processed by honey/pulped natural technique. Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies, 79:103058, 2022.

AVALLONE, S. et al. Microbiological and biochemical study of coffee fermentation. Current Microbiology, 42(4):252-256, 2001.

AVALLONE, S. et al. Involvement of pectolytic micro-organisms in coffee fermentation. International Journal of Food Science and Technology, 37(2):191-198, 2002.

CAIXETA, I. F. et al. Qualidade da semente de café pelo retardamento do processamento pós-colheita. Coffee Science, 8(3):249-255, 2013.

CÓRDOBA, N.; GUERRERO, J. Caracterización de los procesos tradicionales de fermentación de café en el departamento de Nariño. Biotecnoloía en el Sector Agropecuario y Agroindustrial, 14(2):75-83, 2016.

CORREA, E. C. et al. Advanced characterisation of a coffee fermenting tank by multi-distributed wireless sensors: spatial interpolation and phase space graphs. Food and Bioprocess Technology, 7(11):3166-3174, 2014.

CRUZ-O’BYRNE, R.; PIRANEQUE-GAMBASICA, N.; AGUIRRE-FORERO, S. Physicochemical, microbiological, and sensory analysis of fermented coffee from sierra Nevada of Santa Marta, Colombia. Coffee Science, 15:e151797, 2020.

CRUZ-O’BYRNE, R.; PIRANEQUE-GAMBASICA, N.; AGUIRRE-FORERO, S. Microbial diversity associated with spontaneous coffee bean fermentation process and specialty coffee production in northern Colombia. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 354:109282, 2021.

DE BRUYN, F. et al. Exploring the impacts of postharvest processing on the microbiota and metabolite profiles during green coffee bean production. Applied and environmental microbiology, 83:e02398-16, 2017.

DE CARVALHO NETO, D. P. et al. High-throughput rRNA gene sequencing reveals high and complex bacterial diversity associated with brazilian coffee beans fermentation. Food Technology and Biotechnology, 56(1):90-95, 2018a.

DE CARVALHO NETO, D. P. et al. Efficient coffee beans mucilage layer removal using lactic acid fermentation in a stirred-tank bioreactor: Kinetic, metabolic and sensorial studies. Food Bioscience, 26:80-87, 2018b.

DE CARVALHO NETO, D. P. et al. Microbiological, physicochemical and sensory studies of coffee beans fermentation conducted in a yeast bioreactor model. Food Biotechnology, 34(2):172-192, 2020.

ELHALIS, H.; COX, J.; ZHAO, J. Ecological diversity, evolution and metabolism of microbial communities in the wet fermentation of Australian coffee beans. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 321:108544, 2020.

FEDERACIÓN NACIONAL DE CAFETEROS DE COLOMBIA - FNC. Producción anual de café de Colombia cierra 2022 en 11,1 millones de sacos. 2023. Available in: <https://federaciondecafeteros.org/app/uploads/2023/01/BOLETIN-Produccion-anual-de-cafe-de-Colombia-cierra-2022-en-111-millones-de-sacos.pdf>. Access in: 8 mar. 2023.

FLEISS, J. The design and analysis of clinical experiments. Wiley Classics Library Edition Published, 1999.

FEDERACIÓN NACIONAL DE CAFETEROS DE COLOMBIA - FNC. Descripción del proceso productivo y del beneficio del café guía tecnológica del cultivo. Avalible in:< https://federaciondecafeteros.org/static/files/8Capitulo6.pdf >. Access in: February 20, 2024.

INTERNATIONAL COFFEE ORGANIZATION - ICO. World coffee production. Available in: <https://www.ico.org/prices/po-production.pdf>. Access in: 20 February 2023.

JUNQUEIRA, A. C. et al. First description of bacterial and fungal communities in Colombian coffee beans fermentation analysed using Illumina-based amplicon sequencing. Scientific Reports, 9(1):1-10, 2019.

LOPEZ, C. et al. Estudio de algunas variables en el proceso de fermentación de café y su relación con la calidad de taza en el sur de Colombia. Agroecología: Ciencia Y Tecnología, 3(1):22-27, 2015.

MARTINS, P. M. M. et al. Coffee growing altitude influences the microbiota, chemical compounds and the quality of fermented coffees. Food Research International, 129:108872, 2020.

NASANIT, R.; SATAYAWUT, K. Microbiological study during coffee fermentation of Coffea arabica var. chiangmai 80 in Thailand. Kasetsart Journal - Natural Science, 49(1):32-41, 2015.

PACHECO, K. V. et al. Functional metagenomic analysis of the coffee (Coffea arabica) fermentation. Chemical Engineering Transactions, 64:355-360, 2018.

PAPALEXANDRATOU, Z. et al. Hanseniaspora opuntiae, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Lactobacillus fermentum, and Acetobacter pasteurianus predominate during well-performed Malaysian cocoa bean box fermentations, underlining the importance of these microbial species for a successful cocoa bean fermentation process. Food Microbiology, 35(2):73-85, 2013.

PEÑUELA, A. E.; VELASQUEZ, A. V.; ANGEL, C. A. Microbial diversity using a metataxonomic approach, associated with coffee fermentation processes in the department of quindío, Colombia. Fermentation, 9(4):343, 2023.

PEÑUELA, A.; ZAPATA, A.; DURANGO, D. Performance of different fermentation methods and the effect on coffee quality (coffea arabica l.). Coffee Science, 13(4):465-476, 2018.

PEREIRA, G. V. et al. Isolation, selection and evaluation of yeasts for use in fermentation of coffee beans by the wet process. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 188:60-66, 2014.

PEREIRA, G. V. et al. Conducting starter culture-controlled fermentations of coffee beans during on-farm wet processing: Growth, metabolic analyses and sensorial effects. Food Research International, 75:348-356, 2015.

PEREIRA, G. V. et al. Exploring the impacts of postharvest processing on the aroma formation of coffee beans: A review. Food Chemistry, 272:441-452, 2019.

PEREIRA, T. S. et al. Self-induced anaerobiosis coffee fermentation: Impact on microbial communities, chemical composition and sensory quality of coffee. Food Microbiology, 103:103962, 2022.

PRAKASH, I. et al. Metabolomics and volatile fingerprint of yeast fermented robusta coffee: A value added coffee. LWT, 154:112717, 2022.

PUERTA, G. Especificaciones de origen y buena calidad del café de Colombia. Avances Técnicos Cenicafé, (136):1-8, 2003

RENALOA. - Red nacional de laboratorios oficiales de análisis de alimentos. Análisis Microbiológico de los Alimentos Microorganismos Indicadores. Avalible in: < Analisis_microbiologico_de_los_alimentos_Vol_III.pdf (anmat.gob.ar)>. Access in: February 20, 2024.

RIBEIRO, L. S. et al. Microbiological and chemical-sensory characteristics of three coffee varieties processed by wet fermentation. Annals of Microbiology, 68(10):705-716, 2018.

SHANKAR, S. R. et al. Microbial ecology and functional coffee fermentation dynamics with Pichia kudriavzevii. Food Microbiology, 105:104012, 2022.

SPECIALTY COFFEE ASSOCIATION - SCA. Protocols & best practices. Available in: <https://sca.coffee/research/protocols-best-practices>. Access in: February 20, 2024.

SUPERINTENDENCE OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE - SIC. Por la cual se declara la protección de la Denominación de Origen: Café de Colombia. 2005. Available in: <https://www.sic.gov.co/sites/default/files/files/sentencia de competencia desleal/Sentencia_06_2005.pdf>. Access in: February 20, 2024.

SUPERINTENDENCE OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE - SIC. Por la cual se declara la protección de la Denominación de Origen: Café de Nariño. 2011. Available in: <https://www.sic.gov.co/sites/default/files/files/Denominacion de Origen/Agro - Alimenticios/Café de Narino/cafe_de_narino.pdf>. Access in: February 20, 2024.

VAUGHAN, M. J. et al. What’s inside that seed we brew? A new approach to mining the coffee microbiome. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 81(19):6518-6527, 2015.

VELMOUROUGANE, K. Impact of natural fermentation on physicochemical, microbiological and cup quality characteristics of Arabica and Robusta coffee. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences India Section B - Biological Sciences, 83(2):233-239, 2013.

ZHANG, S. J. et al. Following coffee production from cherries to cup: Microbiological and metabolomic analysis of wet processing of coffea arabica downloaded from. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 85(6):1-22, 24, 2019a.

ZHANG, S. J. et al. Influence of various processing parameters on the microbial community dynamics, metabolomic profiles, and cup quality during wet coffee processing. Frontiers in Microbiology, 10:2621, 2019b.




How to Cite

GUEVARA, C. E. C. .; ESPAÑA, M. N. O. .; SOLARTE, F. E. C. .; CHAVES, E. F. C. .; TROYA, A. H. .; BUCHELI, A. D. P. .; GUTIÉRREZ, N. H. H. .; ROMO, D. M. R. . Exploratory evaluation of dry fermentation of specialty coffee from Nariño-Colombia, -using wet and honey-like methods. Coffee Science - ISSN 1984-3909, [S. l.], v. 19, p. e192163, 2024. DOI: 10.25186/.v18i.2163. Disponível em: https://coffeescience.ufla.br/index.php/Coffeescience/article/view/2163. Acesso em: 13 jul. 2024.