MILAN – DNA Analytica is the only company in the world offering to the coffee dealers, services and certification based on DNA analysis.
The Company has been founded in 2011 as a spin-off of the University of Trieste, after 15 years of research carried out by the founding members of DNA Analytica.
In 1997, the genetic code of coffee was still unknown, when Ernesto Illy went in touch with Professor Giorgio Graziosi, a genetics expert at the University of Trieste, to analyze a particular variety of coffee from the point of view of its DNA.
From then, he embarked in a project that led to the filing of two important patents: the first one covers the identification of the different varieties of the plant; the second one, allows for the identification and for the quantification of Arabica / Robusta blends.
During the last few years, Professor Graziosi has been involved in the sequencing of the genome of Robusta while, next goal will be the sequencing of the Arabica genome which is twice as much that of Robusta. «If we align the DNA of an Arabica coffee bean – said Giorgio Graziosi – we could take a round trip to the moon».
These studies have great potential for practical applications as shown below:
COMPARISON BETWEEN TEST SAMPLE AND LARGE SHIPMENTS
QUANTITATIVE AND/OR QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS OF ARABICA/ROBUSTA BLENDS
CERTIFICATION OF SPECIALTY OR GOURMET COFFEE
GMO/NON-GMO COFFEE CERTIFICATION
APPLICATION: THE DNA OF JAMAICA BLUE MOUNTAIN
Sandalj Trading Company, an internation trader of green coffee based in Trieste, asked prof. Graziosi and his Staff to analyse the DNA of a sample of the Jamaica Blue Mountain (JBM), one of the most requested and expensive coffee in the world.
For the first time the Sandalj sample was analysed and compared to the DNAs stored in the Data Bank of DNA Analytica. The correspondence between the Sandalj sample and the sample of Blue Mountain stored in the Data Bank was perfect.
FINGERPRINTING AND ITS USE IN COFFEE ANALYSIS
The Fingerprinting of the DNA allows for the identification of any biological sample, human, animal or plant, provided that the genetic background is known.
Normally, coffee is frequently sold as powder, and the consumer is forced to trust the label and also the coffee dealers evaluate their coffees by roasting, grinding and tasting the coffee quality in the cup.
Unfortunately this method is not always reliable. While the fingerprinting is undisputable and can solve any doubt; at a very reasonable cost (€ 80-200 depending upon the type of analysis).
DNA Analytica offers new services to the coffee dealers; as well to the consumer, as it happens for the sample of Jamaica Blue Mountain; certified for the Sandalj Trading Company.