Would you like to major in coffee?
UC Davis students may soon be able to study the science behind the beverage. Coffee is the largest food import in the U.S. and 54% of Americans over 18 consume a cup of coffee EVERY day (…35% of those coffee drinkers like their coffee black).
People have been drinking coffee since (approximately) the 15th century, but there isn’t a ton of science involved in the industry. “Coffee tends to be a generational industry, and it’s a nonscientific industry right now. You cannot get a four-year degree or a Ph.D. in coffee right now,” Peter Rogers, a coffee roaster, explains.
The recently founded UC Davis Coffee Center —similar to the school’s Institute for Wine and Food Science— is hoping to eventually offer a major in coffee science. The center is focusing on research topics like:
- Coffee genetics
- Sustainability in coffee growing & waste within the production chain
- Analyzing coffee composition, structure and function
- Coffee as potential prebiotic
- Isolating the factors that create flavor
(Image via Chris McVeigh)