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A cup of coffee only contains 0.2% of the biomass of the red cherries harvested. The process of fermenting, drying, roasting, grinding and brewing leads to the ingestion of a minute fraction of the 10 million tons of coffee produced worldwide. This understanding has given rise to the "coffee chemistry", including farming of mushrooms on post-harvest, post-industrial and post-consumer coffee, the use of the spent substrate enriched with amino-acids as animal feed, the use of fine coffee particles as an odor control, UV-protector and even hydrogen storage system.

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