PRICE AND QUALITY OF COFFEE (COFFEA ARABICA L.) DRIED USING AIR DEHUMIDIFIED BY CONVECTION
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ABSTRACT Grain drying processes have been improved to reduce costs and losses of coffee beverage quality. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the quality of coffee dried using air partially dehumidified before entering drying units (DUs) in four coffee-producing farms, as well as the effects of such process on coffee commercial value. The method consisted of obtaining three samples (triplicates) of coffee dried in both DUs and concrete terraces (control) for mean multiple comparisons. The following variables were analyzed for sieve #13 and hand-picked beans: defect number, cupping test, and pricing. Evaluations were carried out by three professional graders. The results showed that coffee dried in the DUs presented fewer broken grains, higher cupping score, and less negative factors of handsorting and defects. As a conclusion, it should be emphasized an average increase of 12.11% in price for coffee beans previously dehumidified.