Does Coffee Go Bad?

The Good

A popular question we get asked is about coffee’s expiration date. The good news is that when stored for a long period of time coffee beans don’t spoil like milk. Old coffee beans also don’t make you sick, even if the expiration date has passed.

However, once the coffee grounds are wet, you can’t reuse them, and you definitely don’t want to store them. They will develop mold and make you sick. Same with a pot of brewed coffee. You never want to leave it sitting around. The natural oils in coffee will go rancid over time, and no one wants rancid coffee.

The Bad

Although coffee doesn’t go “bad” it will lose its quality in flavor and richness over time, say after a few months. The biggest threat to coffee is oxygen. The more oxygen that comes into contact with the beans or grounds, the faster it starts to deteriorate. That’s why all of our coffee bags contain a one-way valve, and are heat sealed.

If you thought that tiny little hole in front of coffee bags was an adult’s version of a “scratch ‘n sniff sticker,” you’re wrong but you’re not alone. The one-way valve prevents oxygen from coming into the bag, and allows any oxygen or CO2 released by the coffee to escape outward. The purpose of these high quality bags is to keep the coffee super fresh.

The Storage

As mentioned above, the name of the game is to keep coffee away from coming into contact with oxygen. Our first recommendation is to order your coffee in whole beans as opposed to ground. The increased surface area of ground coffee means there is more exposure to oxygen, and thus, faster degradation of flavor. If you don’t own a coffee grinder, or just prefer purchasing ground coffee from us, the second thing you can do is store it properly.

We wrote a popular blog on the best way to store coffee. Use an airtight container and never store it in the freezer. Click here to learn more.

The Takeaway

  • Coffee doesn’t go bad, but loses quality after a few months.
  • Order whole beans to make it last.
  • Store the coffee in an airtight container, and not in your freezer.
  • Always drink HoC!

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