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Can I Test for Oxygen Levels in My Coffee Bag?

Kelle Vandenberg

There are some coffee roasters or coffee marketers who ask about testing oxygen levels in their coffee bags after being filled and sealed. Roasters frequently want to test oxygen (O2) over a period of time, such as 3 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 months etc. to study coffee bag effectiveness and freshness.

The only way to accurately test oxygen levels is through the use of oxygen analyzing equipment, known as headspace oxygen analyzers, from companies like Mocon and Illinois Instruments. This is not difficult, but the equipment cost starts at about $4,000. The methodology and instructions are straight forward and the results are good to know (PBi can help).  In some cases, bags are leaking from the manufacturer’s seals (in the case of premade bags), your own seals (bag sealers or VFFS), bag abuse (punctures), or the valve.

Good luck, and feel free to contact us at (800) 562-2247 or email bags@pacificbag.com if you have any questions.