Broccoli coffee: How nutritious is the latest foodie trend?

An innovative way to eat your greens or a short-lived coffee fad?

Sabrina Barr
Thursday 07 June 2018 10:32
Can adding broccoli powder to coffee be nutritious and delicious?

For some, the standard frothy cappuccino will never suffice as an adequate caffeinated drink of choice.

In order to be deemed worthy of the “hipster” target market, a coffee must be served in some unconventional manner, such as in an avocado or a carrot.

Broccoli coffee is the latest coffee trend to have surfaced and it’s (unsurprisingly) dividing opinion.

The idea behind the concoction has been created by Hort Innovation and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in Australia in an effort to make use of nutritious vegetables that would otherwise go to waste.

Lead researcher behind the project, Dr Mary Ann Augustin, has explained how making the most of powdered vegetables could be beneficial for the health of consumers and also profitable for producers when added to smoothies, soups or baking mixtures.

“The powders are an option for farmers who wish to produce value-added vegetable ingredients for the lucrative functional food markets,” Dr Augustin said.

The broccoli powder consists solely of whole broccoli, with two tablespoons of the powder containing approximately one portion of the vegetable.

“Research is showing the average Australian is still not eating the recommended daily intake of vegetables a day, and options such as broccoli powder will help address this,” said Hort Innovation chief executive John Lloyd.

While the intention of the broccoli powder is to provide a wholesome way for coffee drinkers to increase their daily vegetable intake, is this trend as nutritious as consumers are being led to believe?

In 2011, a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry assessed whether vegetables that had been transformed into supplements could be as beneficial as they are in their original state.

The researchers came to the conclusion that the body absorbs far fewer of the nutrients found in broccoli when consumed in its supplement form.

However, another study published in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine discovered that consuming a fruit and powder mix over a 90-day period can reduce an individual’s blood pressure.

While there are supposed health benefits to adding powdered vegetables to your diet in addition to the profitability of recycling vegetables that would have otherwise been thrown away, one of the biggest questions has yet to be answered: does broccoli coffee actually taste good?

The “broccolatte” is being served at Commonfolk Cafe, which is based in Victoria, Australia.

One customer described the broccoli coffee as a 'bowl of green, milky mush'

The baristas have put the beverage to the test by making it available to their customers.

One person was evidently none-too-pleased with the drink, describing it as a “bowl of green, milky mush.”

However, others have professed that it’s a great way to increase your daily vegetable intake.

Some people have expressed their views on Facebook, with many making their disapproval for the trend abundantly clear.

“Just stop the madness! Leave coffee alone!” one comment read, while another person wrote: “There are some people in this world that are born just to mess [up] everything that is beautiful!”

However, others have praised the innovation for its sustainability.

“With all the fruit and veg that’s wasted cos it doesn’t fit the right cosmetic profile for grocery stores it’s a wonder all of it isn’t used to make these powders to add to meals for extra nutrients [sic],” another comment read.

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