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Making a mug of coffee might seem like the easiest thing in the world. But have you thought of all the people who are part of making that coffee? There are around 60 million people involved in the coffee industry across the globe. That’s a lot of people’s hard work and passion going into your mug of coffee!

It All Starts With Coffee Plantations

It all starts on the plantations, where farmers tend to the coffee plants and harvest the coffee cherries, usually by hand. Next, they separate the bean from the outer fruit of the cherry. This is done by either hulling them or by washing them in a pulping machine and then drying the beans in the sun. Once dry, the beans have a greenish colour and are called ‘green beans’. It’s in this state they are usually exported for blending and roasting.

Roasting Time

The most important phase of coffee production is roasting. But before the green beans can be roasted, the different mixes, or blends, of coffee beans need to be created. By combining different types of beans it’s possible to create a more rounded taste in the resulting coffee.

It is not until the green beans are roasted that they release the coffee aroma and flavour. Depending on the roasting equipment and the desired flavour of the coffee, green beans are roasted at between 180°C and 240°C for between three and 12 minutes.

Ground and Brewed

Before it can be brewed, the roasted coffee must be ground. Grinding increases the surface area of the coffee, allowing the flavour to be extracted more easily.

To make soluble coffee, the ground coffee is brewed and then dried. The coffee can be dried using hot air or first frozen and then gently heated under vacuum.

Finally the coffee is packed and sent to the stores.


Coffee is grown in a so-called ‘coffee belt’ that encompasses the tropics. Brazil is the biggest producer, followed by Vietnam and Colombia.

Some countries specialise in one type of coffee bean. Robusta coffee is grown from sea level to about 800 meters, mainly in Vietnam, Brazil and Indonesia.

Arabica coffee grows at a higher altitude, usually above 800 meters and up to 2.500 meters. Brazil, Colombia, Ethiopia, Central America, Mexico, India and Eastern Africa are among the best-known Arabica producing regions.

Coffees have typical regional tastes, influenced by soil and weather conditions. Costa Rica produces a mild coffee with nutty flavour while Indonesian coffee has a thick, mellow character. Ethiopian coffee is prized for its smooth strong flavour.


The unique NESCAFÉ® process starts with selecting green coffee beans. Each step of the production is carefully controlled and monitored to ensure the best quality.

After blending the green coffee beans, they are roasted at the required temperature for the right amount of time to achieve the desired taste and aroma profile. Next, the beans are ground and brewed. The coffee extract then goes through an evaporation and drying process that turns it into granules or powder: that’s the coffee you use to make a mug of NESCAFÉ®.

But for us, production is more than just providing the best quality in a cup. We place value on coffee that’s made with respect to the environment and to people.

Our attitude is embodied in the NESCAFÉ® Plan, a global initiative started in 2010 that supports the responsible farming, production and consumption of coffee.

As part of the plan, we are improving our production processes by reducing our water and energy usage footprints and lowering emissions of greenhouse gases from our factories and transport operations.