Infographic showing anatomy of a coffee cherry

The Anatomy of a Coffee Cherry

May 25, 2020

The origins of the magical bean we all of love so much.

We all the love the bean, but coffee goes through a long process to get to our cup. Sometimes you have to just appreciate the beauty of nature, and how cool the plant it gives us is.

The cherry that produces our favorite bean has a few key parts:

Outer Skin (Pericarp, Exocarp)

The outermost layer of the coffee cherry. The skin starts out as a vibrant green before slowly shifting to either a deep red or yellow as the fruit matures.

Pulp (Mesocarp)

This is the nutrient-rich flesh of the coffee fruit, which is removed during processing.

Pectin

This thin layer joins the pulp and outer skin of the cherry to its amazing caffeine-rich inner contents.

Parchment (Hull, Endocarp)

The innermost layer of the outer skin (pericarp), this is either removed during initial processing or just before the coffee is exported as green coffee.

Silver Skin (Testa, Epidermis)

The last layer of the cherry before the bean, the silver skin is mostly removed during processing, though parts usually remain and are removed as the bean is roasted. In certain regions where coffee is grown the silver skin can be a darker color, producing what is termed a ‘fox bean’.

Bean (Endosperm)

The beautiful caffeinated bean we all love.

Center Cut

The coffee bean’s heart. This is where the love is stored.