stickyboomboom asked: Has research been done by anyone to determine at what temperature the green beans are 'holding' and not deteriorating? I fear that freezing them might be encouraging processes that could be deleterious to flavour and its development. Vernalization (mimicking a winter environment in the freezer) is something we do to seeds to encourage boreal vegetable seeds to germinate. I would be very interested to hear about a particular lot that had part of it frozen and part of it refrigerated.
I have no idea what research has been done in this regard.
I remember talking with the “coffee breeders” (researchers) at the FNC (Colombian Coffee Federation) research plantation where they have over 800 Arabica varieties. They told me that in order to keep a gene pool of coffee trees, you need to keep the trees and not the seeds. The embryo in the seeds will slowly die when kept in room temperature and will quickly die when frozen as it is a tropical plant. Although we have one of the biggest seed banks in the world in the perma frost in Svalbard in Norway I did not really question why the coffee seeds die when they are frozen but I am sure they have a good answer to that.
When it comes to quality, you can definitely keep coffee fresh in a freezer for a while, but if you defrost it I am not sure for how long the coffee will stay fresh. I am sure George has better experience here than me.