The daily grindAlthough tea can justifiably be referred to as Ireland’s traditional brew, there has been a huge risein coffee consumption in recent years. We take a look at what’s on offer and the health issuessurrounding this popular beverage.
Ethical sources of coffee
are cultivated in Africa, the Far East and shops all over Ireland. It’s now common less than their production costs, forcing them into a cycle of poverty and debt.
€280 million a year. A coffee shop is not looking at the beans. If they are Arabica While farmers sell at a loss, business for coffee companies is at an all time high.
Fairtrade offers a viable solution to this are roasted very quickly. This results in a AT A GLANCE
coffee products in supermarkets, and fair The coffee bean
fresh for longer, but ground coffee, once Coffee terms.
Like wine, the origin of coffee has a huge container and used within a few days.
Health effects.
Mixed messages
Best value.
FOOD MARCH 2009 consumer choice
Useful contacts
Acidity Positive term used to describe the sharp,
Food Safety Authority
of Ireland
Aroma Refers to the smell of the coffee and
Barista A person highly skilled in preparing
Bitter or burnt Undesirable flavour characteristics
Blend Combination of two or more varieties of
Bloom The golden froth on the top of the cup.
Irish Nutrition and
Body Refers to the density of the coffee.
Dietetic Institute
Flavour Describes the impression you get when
Mental performance
the ability to perform complex tasks. The Price (€)
Bagel Factory
Bewley’s Cafe
Butlers Chocolate Café
Café Gusto, Cork
Café Luna, Galway
Café Sol
Coffee Society
La Cala, Dublin
McCafé (McDonald’s)
and Alzheimer's disease, but the evidence Mews Café, Cork
Mojo Café Bar, Limerick
Mugshot Café, Kilkenny
Liver health
O’Briens Sandwich Bar
In Italy a 2007 review of the relationship Pinocchio Luas Kiosk Ranelagh
Subway (Dublin 1)
Superquinn Café Refresh
risk of the disease. The results of another West Coast Coffee
Centra (Dublin 6)
developing cirrhosis of the liver dropped Londis (Dublin 2)
Spar (Dublin 6)
Dunnes Stores
Caffeine hit
reports in the media on the health effects The caffeine in coffee acts as a stimulant when a scientific study is carried out. For most people, one or two cups of coffee in the morning won’t affect their sleeping suggesting that coffee can reduce insulin smoking, not coffee, was the likely cause. sensitivity, which would actually increase those who are sensitive to the stimulant.
the risk of diabetes. Confusion can occur Antioxidant protection
Most studies on a cancer-coffee link have significant amounts of coffee for at least consumer choice MARCH 2009 FOOD
• Americano An espresso diluted with hot water.
• Cappuccino An Italian espresso coffee containing steamed, frothy milk and sprinkled with chocolate.
• Espresso A strong, dark coffee made from roasted and finely ground beans, served in a small cup.
• Frappuccino A blend of ice and a mix constituted of coffee, water, milk, and various syrups
• Iced coffee A double strength coffee diluted by melting ice.
• Instant A powdered, soluble extract from coffee beans.
• Latte One part espresso to two parts steamed milk, usually served in a tall glass.
• Macchiato An espresso topped with a little frothed milk.
• Mocha An espresso mixed with chocolate and topped with whipped cream.
Cutting calories? Choose a skinny latte or cappuccino, which is made with skimmed or low fat milk to cut down on calories and fat. Stay
well away from deluxe treats such as the Maple White Chocolate Crème, a white chocolate based frappuccino with added maple syrup, served with whipped cream, maple topping and white chocolate sauce! CAFFEINE CONTENT
avoided if you have high blood pressure.
opposite). The volume of a ‘cup’ of coffee sized ‘tall’ cup holds 12 ounces of coffee.
calcium in the bones, and some scientists and the dearest, at €2.50, were in Butlers, calculated the average cost of a takeaway The perfect brew
at home isn’t difficult. We’ve put some cups of coffee, while a 200g jar of instant coffee would provide even more servings. • Use fresh coffee Freshly roasted coffee
buy it as it can go stale very quickly.
Look for a ‘roasted’ or ‘packed on’ date loss. Some are offering a €5 ‘any coffee, • Grind the beans yourself Unless you
saving of up to €2.50 in some cases for Report by
Sinéad Mc Mahon cc
choice comment
Practice makes perfect If the beans are
Drinking coffee has its pros and cons, and its effects vary from person to person. Most people will determine their personal consumption based on their sensitivity to the beverage and on how long they are willing to lie • Instant coffee Once you find a brand
awake at night! Judging from our findings, if you are in the habit of buying a daily coffee on the way to work it can cost over €500 per year! The annual savings can be huge if you make your own coffee in the morning instead. However, if you drink too much you may pay with the jitters and a racing heartbeat. Excessive caffeine • To add flavour Sprinkle spices or
can cause anxiety, insomnia, headaches or stomach irritation. In particular, pregnant and breastfeeding women should keep their caffeine intake low. If you enjoy coffee it’s best to stick to no more than two to three cups a day and, if studies are to be believed, you may even reap some benefits for your health. FOOD MARCH 2009 consumer choice

Source: http://thecai.ie/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/COFFEEmar09.pdf

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