What are the light colored spots on the bean? Is this normal or is it mold? enter image description here

  • Can you circle the area of interest? I can relate both to the silver skin (light brown skin inside and at the middle of the bean) and the porous of some beans. One of them is normal (and good to have), but the other not so much. Aug 17, 2018 at 17:16

2 Answers 2


The light colored spots just look like chaff to me. It is common for there to be skin that stays connected to that middle fold of the bean.


These beans look completely healthy.

One must consider the basic structure of a coffee bean, maybe. To better explain that, I ddg'ed the web and end up with this website that perfectly illustrates the anatomy of a coffee bean.

The images used in this website are taken from academic studies as far as I understood, and named at the very end.


As you can see in the first picture, the coffee cherries has

  • A skin as a outermost layer (common to most fruits)
  • Then, a mucilage; the juicy part of the fruit
  • And then the parchment; a very thin skin that separates the juicy part from the bean

Then, we have the bean. The bean has

  • A silverskin; another thin skin that's attached to the bean (Sometimes called chaff, see here)
  • Endosperm; the most of the bean that we consume as coffee
  • Embryo; the gentic material in case you want to grow a new coffee offspring

In the picture shown on the question, we see mostly chaff as the parchment is already gone during the processing of the beans before roasting.

Finally, this photo shows the chaffs and some parchment on the freshly grounded beans very nicely. This is exactly the sight you may see when you roast at home. (Taken from this website).


  • Borem, F. ed. Pos-colheita do cafe. Lavras: Editora UFLA, 2008.
  • Castro, R. & Marraccini, P. “Cytology, biochemistry and molecular changes during coffee fruit development.” Brazilian Journal of Plant Physiology, vol. 18, Jan – Mar 2006.
  • Wintgens, J. N. Coffee: Growing, Processing, Sunstainable Production (2nd ed.). Weinhem: Wiley-VCH, 2009.
  • Glad to see another Duck Duck Go user. I'm trying to find a good way to call a DDG search. One can say "I googled it" or "Google it". But saying "I ducked it" Or "Duck it", while funny - doesn't work.
    – Mayo
    Aug 10, 2018 at 13:08
  • @Mayo Ducksearch it? I don't know. Probably the site may lead people. They still call themselves DDG.
    – MTSan
    Aug 10, 2018 at 15:02

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