Is Organic Coffee Healthier?

In this article, we will answer the question “Is Organic Coffee Healthier?” and discuss the reasons why organic coffee is healthier than conventional coffee.

Is organic coffee healthier?

Yes, organic coffee can be considered healthier than conventionally grown coffee, due to two reasons: it contains a higher amount of polyphenols than conventionally grown coffee and it contains lower amounts of pesticides residues (1,2).

Polyphenols, phenolic acids and flavonoids are responsible for the antioxidant properties of coffee and are found in higher concentrations in the organic coffee samples, as reported in studies. Polyphenols can also function as natural plant pesticides. 

Why is it better to drink organic coffee?

It is better to drink organic coffee because it has four times lower amounts of pesticide residues when compared to conventional coffee. Consequently, it also contains a significantly lower concentration of heavy metals, such as Cadmium (2).

Organic growing follows strict rules regarding the use of fertilizers and pesticides. Synthetic fertilizers (which include very soluble nitrogen sources) and pesticides are forbidden. Instead, organic fertilizers are used, such as plant organic residues and manure (1,2).

Synthetic fertilizers and pesticides are often made of organochlorines and contain toxic metals, such as Cadmium and Lead. Pesticide residues are often found in commercial coffee samples (3).

These metals have deleterious effects on health. Metals can accumulate in the liver and kidney leading to damage of these organs. The exposure and ingestion of heavy metals should be avoided, according to health authorities (2). 

Another point to consider is the higher amount of phenolic compound found in the coffee that is organically grown, when compared to the coffee conventionally grown (1).

Phenolic compounds have strong antioxidant properties, being able to neutralize oxidative free radicals in the body. Some of the most important phenolics of coffee are chlorogenic acid, caffeic and gallic acid, kaempferol and quercetin. 

These compounds in coffee are known to have improved health benefits, such as helping prevent diseases, such as obesity, diabetes, some types of cancer and heart disease (4).

What are the other differences between organic coffee and conventional coffee?

In addition to containing a higher amount of antioxidants than conventionally grown coffee, organic coffee contains a higher amount of caffeine. This is due to the type of fertilization, which does not include synthetic fertilizers (1).

The amount of caffeine in the coffee is related to the nitrogen. In organic growing, the nitrogen is supplied by organic fertilizers, such as manures. In the conventional crops, nitrogen is supplied by sources that enable the fast solubilization of nitrogen and improve absorption by the plant.

As a consequence, the concentration of caffeine in freshly roasted conventional coffee is 4.61 mg/ g while the caffeine in freshly roasted organic coffee is 5.26 mg/ g, according to studies. During storage, caffeine may be reduced.

Other FAQs about coffee that you may be interested in.

Does Bulletproof Coffee Have to Have Grass-Fed Butter?

Is it OK to Use Distilled Water to Make Coffee?

Can I Drink a Latte on Keto?


In this article, we answered the question “Is Organic Coffee Healthier?” and discussed the reasons why organic coffee is healthier than conventional coffee.


  1. Król, Katarzyna, et al. The content of polyphenols in coffee beans as roasting, origin and storage effect. Euro Food Res Technol, 2020, 246, 33-39.
  2. Barański, Marcin, et al. Higher antioxidant and lower cadmium concentrations and lower incidence of pesticide residues in organically grown crops: a systematic literature review and meta-analyses. British J Nutr, 2014, 112, 794-811.
  3. Mekonen, Seblework, Argaw Ambelu, and Pieter Spanoghe. Effect of household coffee processing on pesticide residues as a means of ensuring consumers’ safety. J agric food chem, 2015, 63, 8568-8573.
  4. LIczbiński, Przemysław, and Bożena Bukowska. Tea and coffee polyphenols and their biological properties based on the latest in vitro investigations. Ind Crops Prod, 2022, 175, 114265.