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Is there a link between Coffee consumption and a reduced risk of Cancer?

According to a number of scientific studies, regular consumption of Coffee can provide important health benefits. It is thought that particular groups of phytonutrients - including high levels of antioxidants - may result in lower levels of inflammation, a recognised precursor that can trigger a wide range of diseases. You may be interested to read the following educational report, https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ijc.209  In conclusion it said:

"We have found that coffee consumption is significantly associated with a decreased incidence of liver cancer.

In addition, subgroup analysis among our subjects with a history of liver disease showed an inverse association

between coffee consumption and the risk of liver cancer".

Shade-grown coffee plants are cultivated among the forest canopy of trees in rain-forest areas rather than infertile waste-lands that are exposed to the full glare of the sun. Although the average yield from a shade-grown coffee plant is limited due to the restriction of direct sunlight, the fruit containing the beans remains on the plant for considerably longer than fast growing 'open-sun' hybrid coffee plants that have been created via cross-breeding or genetic engineering ....

Shade-grown coffee contains far higher levels of antioxidants and other important health supporting phyto-nutrients which in turn provides a superior quality bean compared to 'open-sun' coffee plantations. It stands to reason that a diverse habitat creates healthier soil while protecting the environment for the benefit of native plants, insects and animals. In addition this traditional method of farming helps to minimise the harmful effects of global warming.

 

Robusta vs Arabica:
The two most common varieties of coffee tree are Arabica and Robusta. Arabica coffee is harder to grow and thrives at a relatively high elevation. Robusta coffee however grows easily at low elevation, but has an inferior 'taste'. Major coffee companies often mix Robusta in with their Arabica to save on costs. Robusta coffee, while cheaper and easier to grow due to it’s resistance to pests, is not favoured by small family owned growers who usually produce Arabica coffee exclusively.

 

Virtually all Certified Organic coffee is grown within lush forest areas that provide vital shade for the slow growing coffee plants, hence the description 'shade-grown' coffee. These diverse, rapidly diminishing habitats offer an important refuge for rare plants, birds, animals & insects that depend on these fragile ecosystems for their survival.

In the 1970’s commercial coffee producers started to develop 'full-sun' coffee farming techniques, and quickly began destroying large areas of ancient rainforest in order to plant full-sun (hybrid) coffee trees that produce higher yields. This short-sighted action created damaging environmental side effects including water pollution and soil erosion.

Non-Organic coffee plantations are often criticised for using high levels of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and synthetic fertilisers. However, some commercial growers claim that chemicals sprayed on coffee plants do not penetrate through the flesh of the cherry and into the bean. But they ignore the fact that when coffee plants are sprayed with toxic chemicals and fed with synthetic fertilisers these contaminants are absorbed by the roots and leaves, therefore poisoning the whole plant, including the beans! In contrast, organic soil is free from chemicals or anything that might harm either humans, wild-life or the surrounding environment. And this means that clean growing conditions enable fungi and living microbes to flourish, producing soil rich in minerals and other nutrients that find their way into the beans - and your cup of coffee! 

It's important to appreciate that birds and insects are attracted to organic farms and they make a valuable contribution to the general health and well-being of coffee plants (watch the videos below). Many hundreds of different species of wild life form a vital symbiotic relationship with plants and the surrounding environment, influencing both the quality - and quantity - of the coffee bean yield.

Unfortunately, non-organic coffee plants - together with cotton and tobacco - are among the most intensively sprayed crops around. Why? Traditionally, coffee plants have grown in shaded areas under tree canopies - that's how they like it. But to increase production, most of the major coffee producers cut down huge areas of rainforest and feed the plants with chemicals in order to grow coffee more quickly. In contrast, certified organic coffee is free from synthetic fertilisers, herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and other harmful-to-health toxins...

Just be aware that when coffee is described as 'FairTrade' it doesn't necessarily mean Certified Organic; it refers only to the price farmers are paid for their work. If you can’t find genuine Organic, then 'certified shade-grown' coffee is the next best thing. Coffee grown using more traditional methods is less likely to be heavily sprayed, and ensures your beans are not destroying rainforests or the surrounding ecosystem. 

 

The following video presentations provide a general overview of how organic farmers cultivate their produce and why they should be supported by the coffee buying Public;

 

The above video contains an English subtitle option for your convenience. Simply click the subtitle button

on the Youtube control panel.

There is no doubt that Organic farming is good for the soil, good for the environment and good for you! When drinking Organic tea or coffee, rest assured you will not be consuming any harmful contaminants. This means that your organically produced beverage will likely taste significantly better and less acidic than conventional, mass-produced tea or coffee. Plus you will be less likely to suffer any negative health issues that have been linked to ingesting pesticides, fungicides and other toxic chemicals. Did you know that Cotton, Tobacco and Non-Organic Coffee plants are the three most heavily sprayed crops on Earth? If you consume either tea or coffee on a regular basis, you should consider choosing Organic, it's better for your health and your taste-buds! 

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Did you know that Certified Organic coffee is rarely served in coffee shops, restaurant chains or even 5 star hotels. Big-brand coffee companies tend to focus on maximising profits at the expense of quality. And that means the espresso or cappuccino you buy in your local coffee shop may contain a cocktail of toxic chemicals and other harmful-to-health contaminants ...

Nevertheless, a recent study reported that coffee has now overtaken tea as Britains favourite beverage. And another survey found that 35% of women in the UK cannot start the day without their caffeine fix - we don't have any stats for the guys unfortunately!

Coffee shops are everywhere it seems, including convenience stores, petrol stations, shopping centres and airports. This explosion in the fast-food and beverage industry is helping to create billions of single-use coffee cups, pods, capsules and other disposable packaging that is extremely difficult to recycle. Discarded plastic and aluminium material creates toxins that can last for hundreds or even thousands of years, polluting our Planet and harming the creatures that live on land or in the Ocean. 

                                                     All Trademarks acknowledged

Planting for profit: but at what cost?

The global food giant Nestlé buys nearly one-billion tons of green coffee annually, fuelling the largest market share of packaged coffee in the world. They aim to grow 220 million high-yield coffee plants over the next decade. The plants will be supplied free, although the farmers will not be obligated to sell to Nestlé. In other words, the farmers are taking on all the risk of increasing their commitment to coffee, without any guarantees it will be purchased.

 

Potentially, the farmers might be forced to sell their crops for little or no return, so large buyers like Nestlé can then maximise their profits when manufacturing finished products for the consumer. So where and how will all this coffee be grown? High-yield coffee varieties are almost always planted in full sun. The push by multinational corporations for farmers to replace their environmentally-friendly ‘shade coffee’ plantations with higher-yielding, chemical-dependent hybrids is creating enormous stress on local ecosystems. Nestlé favour the cheaper to produce Robusta coffee bean, which is used to make instant coffee such as the company’s own Nescafé brand. To achieve their aim, large areas of rainforest are being destroyed on a daily basis to make way for fast-growing varieties of Robusta coffee plants that are designed to grow in direct sunlight. This means that ancient rainforests together with rare and diverse wild-life colonies are disappearing at an alarming rate.

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