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    What the Other Guy Blogs About: Biofuel from Coffee

    By Keith R | January 24, 2009

    Topics: Biofuels, Waste & Recycling | No Comments »

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    When it was first reported that biofuel could be made from coffee oil, I read as many press reports and blog pieces on it as I could find, because the concept intrigued me.  Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), after all, is a major coffee growing region.  And no, I am not just referring to Brazil and Colombia.  Much of Central America also grows coffee, as does the Dominican Republic (some Dominican coffee is excellent, but you’ll probably never taste it unless you travel there).  In any case, almost every piece I read made fun of or dismissed the idea.

    Now comes a very well-written and reasoned piece on the issue over at Dr. Coffee’s “Spilling the Beans” blog that convinces me that the possibility is at least worth further research.  As she says in her abstract:

    On average, a fifth of all coffee grown in Latin America is defective, (Oliveira et al 2007) and cannot be sold on international markets where very high standards of quality are required. Using this defective coffee for fuel instead of for the production of low quality beverages would be beneficial to the small scale producers of coffee, as the defective beans may command a much higher price if sold to the biodiesel industry. Additionally, the main hindrance to biofuel production is the cost of crop production. By making use of the wasted by-product of the existing industry, both the economical, and environmental costs of biodiesel production could be reduced.

    I recommend reading the entire article.

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