The average american has 3 cups of coffee a day according to E-importz. How many coffee plants will you need to have to produce 3 cups of coffee a day? To figure this out we will have to know how much coffee per plant we will be able to get.
This is a good question that many home growers may have.
Let’s just assume that your trees are mature(5-7 years old) and that they aren’t growing in exactly optimal conditions.
So, if you’re a home coffee grower, like myself, you can expect to get about a pound of unroasted coffee beans per plant per year. Maybe a little less.
After the beans are roasted they lose between 15%-20% of their weight. So let’s take the median and say they lose 17.5% of their weight after roasting
That leaves you with 13.2 oz of roasted coffee after roasting your one pound of green coffee beans.
So, you can expect one mature coffee plant to produce just under a pound of roasted coffee per year.
A pound of roasted coffee will make just about 45 6oz cups of coffee, depending on how you like your brew.
For some reason in the coffee world they use 6 oz as the standard measurement for a cup of coffee in america.
Let’s go ahead and accept reality and use 12 oz as the standard cup size.
No matter the size of your cup the national average says we drink 24 ounces of dark, liquid energy a day. If we multiply that by the number of days in a year that means the average american drinks 8,760 ounces of coffee a year!
Or 730 12 ounce cups of coffee a year.
That means that you can harvest enough coffee per plant to produce 22.5 12 oz cups of coffee….
So, to be self sufficient when it comes to the coffee game you will need about 33 fully grown fully mature plants.
That is a tall order! But those numbers are just my opinion, I’m not personally self sufficient when it comes to coffee.
There are other sites like Treehugger that suggest you only need 18 plants to be self sufficient.
According to Gary Strawn (a coffee farmer)” a dedicated interested at home coffee grower could grow coffee in his own backyard.”
Gary thinks that you probably need about 25 plants to produce coffee for yourself all year long!
Take a listen to this podcast, It’s host by a man named Dave the good. He’s a fellow Floridian like myself.
Dave has a great conversation with Gary. He is full of information about the coffee plant, talking all about growing, harvesting producing and drinking coffee!
This is a really great listen!
So you can see that everybody’s numbers are a little different, but either way you can expect this to be a long term investment and you will definitely need plenty of space to be self sufficient.
How much space would you need for 33 coffee plants? Well, according to Blair Estate coffee each plant needs 6 feet in between each other when planted in the same row.
If you had a strip of land that is 198 feet long you could plant all of your plants in that one row.
If you don’t have that option available and you need multiple rows, you should leave a 12 foot gap in between rows.
Maybe coffee self sufficiency sounds like way too much work, maybe you just want to grow one or two coffee plants and enjoy all the wonderful smells and the beautiful flowers that the plant bring with it.
This way enjoying a home grown cup of coffee will be a really special time, something that doesn’t happen every day. You will be able to appreciate that cup of coffee so much more.
Give this article a read that I wrote all about growing your own coffee.
Leave a comment, send me an email contact me some how and let me know what you thought. If there is a topic you want to know more about I would love to hear about it.