Coffee Tips Featured

How Nitrogen Flushing Keeps Coffee Fresh

By Jon Ferguson | May 8, 2020

In a previous Arbor Day Coffee blog, we covered a few of the best methods for storing coffee at home to help preserve freshness. But what steps does Arbor Day Coffee take to ensure you are purchasing the freshest coffee possible? Let’s break it down. 

The first thing we are proud of is that Arbor Day Coffee is shipped soon after it is roasted. There is some flexibility with our inventory projections, which allows us to ensure that coffee can be shipped immediately after an order is processed. This means your coffee was likely roasted within 48 hours to it being shipped. This is one of the best practices our coffee roasting operations can ensure.  

Read Coffee Brewing: Home Edition

To back this up, and to “seal the deal,” most of our coffee packaging options are nitrogen flushed. Nitrogen flushing may sound scary, but it is completely safe, and used in almost every bag of potato chips and other food products on the market.  

Nitrogen is a gas that makes up about 78% of the air that we breathe, and the remaining 21% of air is oxygen. Oxygen, although a life saver for us, is also the enemy of freshness. Oxygen breaks down food, staling it rapidly, but nitrogen has the opposite effect. It helps preserve freshness. Our coffee bags are sealed so that no air can seep into the coffee, but there is a one-way oxygen release valve on the bag which allows oxygen to escape.  

Another clever aspect to nitrogen flushing is that nitrogen is heavier than oxygen, so when filling a bag with nitrogen, it will naturally push the oxygen up and out, where the bag is then quickly sealed, removing all the oxygen within the bag.  

In the video, Jon demonstrates how we can ensure the process was done smoothly. The oxygen reader uses a small needle inserted into the package. The pump is engaged and sucks out the air in the bag, reading the amount of oxygen that is left within the bag. Industry standards aim for only 3% of oxygen, which dramatically slows down the staling process. Nitrogen flushing can help extend the shelf life of coffee for a much longer time.  

But this process ends once the bag is opened. Once the bag is open, follow the recommendations listed in our previous blog What is the Best Way to Store Coffee at Home? The best part about our fractional packs and single serve options is that the entire packet is used for serving immediately, so the coffee will still have a fresh taste like it was roasted days prior, when in reality it may be much longer. 

Packaging and storing coffee is almost as important as selecting the right coffee and roasting it to perfection. Without great packaging and storage, quite often these flavors and wonderful roasting attributes are damaged by stale flavors. 

Arbor Day Coffee puts a great deal of attention to the quality of the coffee, including the packaging and delivery to your door, ensuring the best cup of coffee possible.  

Visit to buy your next bag of Arbor Day coffee.  

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1 Comment

  • Reply RDank September 23, 2020 at 7:49 am

    Oxygen is heavier than nitrogen

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