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First scientific method to authenticate world's costliest coffee, from the feces of the palm civet

Date:
August 21, 2013
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
The world's most expensive coffee can cost $80 a cup, and scientists now are reporting development of the first way to verify authenticity of this crème de la crème, the beans of which come from the feces of a Southeast Asian animal called a palm civet. Their study appears in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

The world's most expensive coffee can cost $80 a cup, and scientists now are reporting development of the first way to verify authenticity of this crème de la crème, the beans of which come from the feces of a Southeast Asian animal called a palm civet.
Credit: © jogyx / Fotolia

The world's most expensive coffee can cost $80 a cup, and scientists now are reporting development of the first way to verify authenticity of this crème de la crème, the beans of which come from the feces of a Southeast Asian animal called a palm civet. Their study appears in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

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Eiichiro Fukusaki and colleagues point out that Kopi Luwak (Indonesian for "civet coffee") is the world's costliest coffee, often fetching $150-$200 per pound. Palm civets eat coffee berries, digest the soft fruit surrounding the bean and excrete the bean.

Workers retrieve the coffee beans and clean, ferment and roast them. The price makes Kopi Luwak a tempting target for fraud, with ordinary coffee sold as Kopi Luwak or real Kopi Luwak adulterated with cheap beans. Fukusaki and his team decided to find a way to scientifically identify the real deal.

They describe identifying unique chemical fingerprints that can be used to identify authentic Kopi Luwak and distinguish pure Kopi Luwak from Kopi Luwak that has been mixed with cheaper coffee. "This is the first report to address the selection and successful validation of discriminant markers for the authentication of Kopi Luwak," the scientists state.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Udi Jumhawan, Sastia Prama Putri, Yusianto, Erly Marwani, Takeshi Bamba, Eiichiro Fukusaki. Selection of Discriminant Markers for Authentication of Asian Palm Civet Coffee (Kopi Luwak): A Metabolomics Approach. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2013; 61 (33): 7994 DOI: 10.1021/jf401819s

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "First scientific method to authenticate world's costliest coffee, from the feces of the palm civet." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 August 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821124552.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2013, August 21). First scientific method to authenticate world's costliest coffee, from the feces of the palm civet. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821124552.htm
American Chemical Society. "First scientific method to authenticate world's costliest coffee, from the feces of the palm civet." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821124552.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

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