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Varieties of Coffee Beans

Updated on August 31, 2012

A few days ago, I wrote about the best coffee producing countries. I find the topic incomplete without talking about the different varieties of coffee beans you may find in the world. So in this topic, I present to you the various types of coffee beans which are grown in different countries around the world. I will also be talking about the differences between these coffee beans here.

There are three main varieties of coffee beans used to prepare coffee. They are:

1. Arabica

This is one of the most commonly used coffee beans. In fact, it accounts for almost 60% of coffee bean production across the world. These coffee beans are highly expensive as they are prone to frost, pests and diseases. As a result, they also need great care while growing. Arabica can be used by itself or partly with Robusta to provide blends. This coffee bean has a delicate flavor and hence can be used as add-on for coffee blends.

The beans vary according to the region in which they are grown in their name and flavor. The most variations of these beans are found in African countries such as Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.

2. Robusta

This is the second most widely grown variety of coffee around the world. It accounts for almost 40% of world’s coffee bean production. Also known as Canephora beans, it has some easily notable differences from Arabica beans. As the name suggests, they are highly resistant to disease, pests and weather. These beans are also cheaper than Kona and Arabica. Robusta’s strong flavor helps in blending it with other coffee blends. As compared to Arabica, there is not much variation in flavor. The Robusta beans have higher caffeine levels while being more bitter, and are considered lower grade coffee beans.

3. Kona

In the commercial world, Kona has very little presence as compared to Arabica and Robust coffee beans. Nonetheless, these beans are still expensive. It can be called a special variety of Arabica. You can usually find them being grown in Hawaii. Kona has a very powerful aroma and is in high demand due to this specialty. Kona beans are highly desired due to their strong aroma and are rarely blended with others.

Now that you are armed with the knowledge of the different varieties of coffee beans, it is time for you to go out to your nearest coffee shop and savor these different flavors of coffee.

Find about some of the best coffee producing countries at

If you are someone who love tea, you may want to check out


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    • karthikkash profile image

      Karthik Kashyap 6 years ago from India

      thanks for pointing it out hush4444. corrections will be made :)

    • hush4444 profile image

      hush4444 6 years ago from Hawaii

      There are actually only two types of coffee beans - robusta and arabica. Kona coffee beans are a type of arabica bean grown in Hawaii. Hawaii is a state, not a country.