Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Certified Coffee in Australia

How To Go Green: 3 Tips For Buying Certified Coffee In Australia

The International Trade Center notes that ‘coffee is the world’s most important agricultural crop in terms of trade volumes; it is exported by 60 countries and is one of the few major commodities grown predominantly by smallholder farmers’. Due to the rise in environmentally responsible coffee, it is possible to actually lower your carbon footprint and ‘go green’ by looking out for ‘certified’ coffee. Certification schemes aim to prevent farmers from using ‘slash and burn’ techniques that level rainforests for the purpose of clearing land and growing coffee beans. Here are three tips for buying ‘greener’ coffee in Australia.



Use A Green Business Directory

It’s easy to pick up certified coffee such as Fair Trade-branded coffee in your local supermarket or grocery store. According the Queensland government’s Office of Fair Trading, however, certified coffee is often sold at a significant mark-up. In other words, you can end up spending significantly more for store-bought coffee just because of its certification label. To avoid this, you could use a green business directory to help you find which stores sell certified coffee at a fair price. In Australia, the Greenfinder Green Business Directory has ‘the most comprehensive selection of green, eco, sustainable, Fair Trade and environmentally friendly companies, products and services’. Use this or similar eco directories to find stores that give you a good deal on certified brands of coffee.



Look For A Trusted, Certified Coffee Logo

According to an International Trade Center publication Trends in the Trade of Certified Coffees, the quantity of certified coffee sold in Australia has ‘increased rapidly at 50 percent per year in recent years’. The ITC notes that finding certified coffee is as easy as looking for logos, even on brand name coffee products. For instance, Rainforest Alliance has a memorable green frog on its logo, prominently displayed on the label of any coffee containing certified beans. The ITC points out that the commitment of multinational companies such as Nestle to ‘certify 80 percent of its coffee with the Rainforest Alliance by 2013’ has contributed to much of the growth of certified coffee brands. If you are already buying brand-name coffee such as Nestle, you may already be drinking certified coffee.



Shop Online
             According to data from the Sustainable Agriculture Network, the bestdeals on certified coffee are to be found online. Buying certified coffee ensures that your money helps ‘stave off deforestation, protect the habitats of birds, preserve the livelihood of coffee farmers and encourage social equity and economic viability for workers’ according to the SAN. The cheapest way to do all this and more is to buy coffee online. Be sure to look for coffee websites who offer certified brands of coffee such as Rainforest Alliance coffee.



                                      Buying certified coffee can help the world but it doesn’t have to cost the earth. These three tips should help anyone find certified coffee in Australia for the right price. Whether you are buying coffee for yourself, for a business or for your family, following these tips should help you find the greenest brands at the most reasonable prices. What do you think of our tips? What did we miss? Let us know in the comments section below!


Author Bio:    Danny Richards, the author of this article, is an employee at, online suppliers of fine coffee beans in Australia. In his spare time, Danny loves reading and is a massive fan of Stephen King.


Featured images:
  •  License: Creative Commons image source
  •  License: Creative Commons image source
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  •  License: Royalty Free or iStock source:


Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Making Homemade Soda


Get The Fizz In Your Home By Making Homemade Soda!

Nothing beats a cold and refreshing soda on a hot summer day. It soothes your throat and nerves and leaves you feeling remarkably refreshed. When you get the cravings for the soda sensation, do not think about how far the store is but how close your refrigerator is because you can make your own soda right in your own kitchen.


Many people think that making soda is a complicated process whereas it is not the basics are sugar some flavor and carbonation. You need the complex machines if you are doing mass production but creating a few bottles should be no problem whatsoever.  If you are in doubt about the authenticity of such home making methods, then be assured that making soda at home has been tried and tested over the years.


Many have been making refreshing drinks from plants in the gardens hence the name of such popular brands like ‘root’ beer and ‘ginger’ ale. The inventor of the recipe must have had aging children pulling at her skirts on a hot summer day or so I believe.





What you need to know about soda making


Commercial soda is made using water, artificial flavor and carbon dioxide. The flavor and water are in the form of corn syrup then once the liquid is made, the gas is pumped into the soda through force carbonation. The difference with homemade soda is the lack of equipment to force carbon dioxide into the liquid. The solution is to add some yeast to the solution that at warm temperature will ferment and produce carbon dioxide.


What you need to do is combine all your ingredients well, and once you get the desired amount of liquid pour it into a sturdy bottle that can accommodate and handle the gas. Add in yeast and let it ferment for two days under room temperature. After that, place it in the fridge to avoid the liquid fermenting further and creating a beer of sorts.


Yes, homemade beer is made in the same but do not worry but the alcohol content in the soda because of your children. The refrigeration impedes further fermentation keeping alcohol levels to less than 1%, which has negligible effect on yourself and your children.





What you need to get started


Get a few sturdy bottles and it is safer to use strong plastic instead of glass. Plastic can withstand the gas pressure, and in the event, you underestimate the gas production, plastic will burst open unlike glass that will shatter and cause possible harm. Keep away from glass until you get the hang of the brewing process. Always keep tabs on date and time of brewing for accuracy and avoid over fermentation.


Preferably, taking bottles equivalent to a serving size to make it easy for someone to pick one form the fridge and drown it down. It also prevents children from taking too much once they know they can only take one bottle.


Sanitize the bottles before use and never use those from the recycling outlet to avoid the presence of bacteria. Place the bottles as you prepare the ingredients in water with a little chlorine for about 20 minutes then rinse thoroughly afterwards.


Get a bottlebrush to clean your bottles after use under replace bottle caps often as the pressure makes them wear out easily.




Benefits of making soda at home

  • Homemade soda is healthier that that bought in the store. Depending on the ingredients you place in your soda, you enjoy the nutrients from the ginger or the licorice root. The yeast added for the carbonation process contains complex vitamin B.
  • Importantly, if you want to enjoy a soda but are wary of the high sugar content in commercial soda you can control the sugar in yours. No more worries about sugar content in your blood stream or decaying teeth in your children. Home soda contains less sugar by a third to that in the stores.
  • Homemade soda is cheaper to make then going to the store and buying some. You can take one day of the weekend and make some for the whole week then refrigerate.
  • Picking soda of a shelf does not count as quality family time unlike spending several minutes in the kitchen with your children as they aid with the process. It makes perfect time to throw a few life skills their way.



Author Bio:

The author of this post Emily used to work for a well-known soda manufacturing company. She is of the opinion that installing soft drink machines at home is a good idea as it lets you have your favourite soft drink in the comfort of your home.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

6 Reasons Why Coffee Can Help You Live Forever

Do you find it almost impossible to function without several cups of strong coffee in the morning? If so you are not alone. Millions of Americans drink coffee every day and it is one of the world’s most popular beverages. It doesn’t even matter how you drink it particularly, although if you are partial to frappuccinos, your waistline will suffer in the long term. So what are the health benefits of drinking coffee and can it really help you live forever?



Keep Going All Day Long

The caffeine content in coffee acts as a powerful stimulant, which is great if you have been up all night or are just feeling a bit sleepy mid afternoon. A cup of strong coffee will blow the cobwebs away and help to keep your brain functioning. So if you are on a long road trip but are beginning to feel sleepy, stop for a cup of extra strong espresso—the break plus a dose of caffeine will help to prevent you from dosing off at the wheel, and thus dying prematurely.



Reduces Risk of Depression

Depression is a serious mental health disorder. Millions of people suffer from some degree of depressive illness at one time or another and if left untreated, depression can lead to suicidal thoughts. Drinking a few cups of coffee per day has been shown to reduce the risk of depression, but irrespective of this, coffee is very much a social drink, so making the effort to step outside the house and meet friends for a coffee is a great mood lift. And happy people live longer.



Reduced Risk of Cancer

Several scientific studies have indicated that people who drink coffee have a reduced risk of developing cancer. Oral cancers, prostate, liver and breast cancer rates are all lower amongst those who enjoy a daily dose of coffee, which is good news for your life expectancy. Drinking espressos might not prevent you from developing cancer at some point, but it could just lessen the odds.



Reduced Risk of Alzheimer’s

Coffee helps to keep the brain healthy, apparently. Studies have indicated that those who drink three or four cups of coffee per day are a lot less likely to develop neurological brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease. You do need to have been a regular coffee drinker for twenty years or so for maximum protection, so if you only picked up the coffee habit last year, you have some way to go yet.



Prevents Diabetes

Coffee contains high levels of antioxidants and minerals, which is why it has been linked to a reduction in the levels of Type 2 diabetes in a number of important scientific studies. Minerals such as chromium and magnesium are known to help the body regulate insulin levels, so regular coffee drinkers are far less likely to be diagnosed with diabetes. However, if you are significantly overweight or you never take any exercise, drinking coffee is unlikely to prevent you from developing diabetes at some point.
Coffee has a number of health benefits that can enhance your life, but if consumed in excess, caffeine is dangerous and may end up shortening your life instead. So remember, for maximum benefits, only drink good quality coffee and always enjoy it in moderation.



Featured images:


Toby Mathews, the author of this postis a sales executive at Caruso Caffe, a firm that specializes in espresso machines in Toronto. He enjoys writing about his experiences and he goes out of his way to help people. Whenever he isn’t busy, he likes to spend time with his family.

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