National Systems for Grading
Countries that have unique ways of
designating different qualities of coffee include Brazil, which
classifies each bag by the species of coffee, the port from which the
coffee is exported (Santos, Parana, etc), and then by a defective bean
qualification, for example: NY (meaning "we are counting the defective
beans the way the Americans understand it") and Standard 3 (which means
an average sample of 300 grams would have 12 defective beans). The
defects also include points for stones and twigs. Brazil's grading also
includes bean size, color, density, shape, roast potential, cup quality,
processing method, crop year and lot number.
Modest Ethiopia, with some truly
aristocratic world-class coffees, is content to denote simply the
processing, the name of the region of production, and a grade number
between 1 and 8, each of which indicates a certain number of defects.
Colombia's grading is even simpler: each bag has the name of the region,
and sorts by size, e.g. Excelso beans are smaller versions of the
Indonesia has recently changed from its
old Dutch system of grading. Now, R=Robusta, A=Arabica, WP=wet
processed, DP=dry processed; six quality grade numbers, with 1 & 2 High,
3 & 4 Medium, 5 & 6 Lower grades; AP after the grade number means After
Polished, and L, M and S stand for bean sizes large, medium and small.
For example, R/DP Grade 2L would be a dry processed large-bean robusta
of very high quality; A/WP Grade 3/AP would denote a medium-quality
polished washed arabica.