Fun Facts about Coffee Pods
It’s finally midday and you hear the familiar, sluggish footsteps of your coworker making his way to the office pantry. You hear the pod crackling, the machine rumbling, and it isn't long before the nutty aroma of coffee hits the working space.
Well, you might be familiar with the ever-so-used coffee pods that have infiltrated home kitchens and office pantry spaces. This is of no surprise, given how quick and convenient it is to have a cup of freshly-brewed coffee in your hands simply with a push of a button. Furthermore, the assortment of coffee pods we have today is vast – from coffee beans of various origins to the many types of flavoured coffee, it’s tough to not find one that suits your taste.
But how much do you know about these coffee pods that have made us all feel like baristas ourselves?
Origin of Coffee Pods
The idea of coffee pods originated as far back as 1975, when Swiss engineer and inventor, Eric Favre, visited Italy in search of the finest espresso. At a popular local espresso bar, he observed how the barista would repeatedly pump the espresso to extract the coffee, releasing impeccable flavours and aromas from the beans. Favre was inspired by the process – he went on to develop sealed coffee capsules and a complementary machine, which enabled the mimicking of the espresso machine with a much simpler operating system.
Each coffee pod contains ground coffee beans and air, while the machine would add a layer of pressurised air into the water and ground coffee to create a frothy cup of espresso.
Coffee Pods vs Other Types of Coffee
Apart from coffee pods, other common types of coffee forms that coffee lovers turn to include instant coffee and coffee beans. So, what’s the difference between these popular coffee options?
Unlike coffee pods that contain ground coffee, instant coffee is often first brewed, then dried or frozen to eventually form coffee powder or granules. In its final form, you can easily add water to dissolve the powder, and your piping-hot cup of coffee is ready to go! Given how easy it is to prepare a cup of instant coffee, many turn to it as a convenient and fast perk-me-up. However, instant coffee is often perceived to lack the depth in flavour and aroma that coffee beans have. It is hence of no wonder that coffee beans require much more time and effort in preparation. If you want to lay hands on your flavourful cup of coffee, well … not so fast! You’d first have to grind, tamp and brew the coffee beans.
In comes coffee pods – somewhat hitting the sweet spot. The sealed coffee pods prevent the ground coffee from being exposed to the environment, preserving the aroma and flavour of your delectable coffee. Furthermore, all you’ll need to do is to pop your coffee pod into the coffee machine, decide on your brew, and there you’ll have it! Similar to coffee beans, coffee pods today come in so many flavours - from traditional coffee to chocolate-flavoured ones, coffee pods are a fuss-free option for you to savour your coffee.
Is it worth it to invest in a single-cup coffee machine?
Sure, a coffee machine is an upfront cost and some coffee machines might be rather pricey. However, if you’re constantly heading up to the local cafes nearby to get your cup of coffee fix every morning, this coffee machine might be worth your penny. Each capsule today costs about $0.70 to $1.50 (or even cheaper if you opt for subscription services), which is significantly cheaper than purchasing a cup of specialty coffee – not to mention the added benefits of convenience, ease and variety. You could opt for machines that come with milk jugs in-built within them, or just add your milk to your coffee cup – cutting down your expense on the machine.
There are many brands of coffee pod-compatible machines out there. The basic ones that are compatible with the NespressoⓇ original series pods cost slightly above $90 while the NespressoⓇ original series itself starts at about $180.
Are Coffee Pods Bad For Our Environment?
Along with the growing demand for good quality coffee, coffee drinkers today have also been seeking more sustainable coffee pod options. You might wonder how sustainable coffee pods are, amidst growing claims of “eco-friendly” and “pro-sustainability” options.
Well, good news! There are coffee pods today made of biodegradable materials which can be disposed of safely without generating more waste. Properly disposed of in compost bins, these compostable pods typically break down in about 5-6 weeks on their own, reducing your carbon footprint.
Now that you know more about coffee pods, it's time to get one for your home! Or … maybe you could try to ask your boss to get one for the office pantry? Check out some of our recommendations here.