PLS 007: Just Coffee

by Sheena M Campbell – January 27, 2022

This guide will help you find resources for the completion of your work in Just Coffee, and beyond.  It is arranged around the different perspectives from which you will examine coffee during the course.  Many of the resources presented here cover several of these perspectives, and so will be useful to you in more than one module. Think creatively about how to use them!  Sheena is happy to help if you have questions.

Off Campus Access

To access resources from your own computer, or from off-campus, please visit this site through the UC Davis library VPN.


Sheena Campbell

Student Services Department
Student Services Librarian


In this Guide:

Guides & Tutorials 

Resources to help you find, evaluate and use information.

Citation Styles

Find resources to help you follow the APA, MLA or CSE style guidelines for formatting and citing information sources.

Citation Managers

Software to organize and automatically reformat your bibliographies. Compare popular citation management products: EndNote, Mendeley, Zotero, and Sciwheel


Document your search process, so you can easily update and build upon it.  This useful template for note taking was developed by Carrol Community College.

The process of peer review is one way in which credibility is established in scientific literature.

What is peer review?

Click here to watch a 2 min video describing the peer review process

How to tell if a source is peer reviewed

Look for limits/filters

Many databases allow you to specify that you want to search only in “peer reviewed” or “refereed” sources.

Visit the journal’s webpage

Search online for your journal’s title. Sections like “about this journal” or “editorial policies” generally mention whether the journal is peer reviewed/refereed.

Check a directory 

Use the Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory to find key information about a journal, including whether it has a peer review process.


Evaluating Information Resources

A resource does not have to be academic to be credible. Critical evaluation of information presented to you is always important, but especially if it is not already vetted by people who are familiar with the field, and with methods to determine the reliability of information.

For information available on the open internet, it is helpful to refer to criteria like those for evaluating Wikipedia articles:

 The SIFT Method (The Four Moves)

Created by Mike Caulfield, is a way to determine if resources are credible. Establishing the credibility of information can be challenging, but the SIFT method was created to help you analyze information by providing a list of things to do when looking at a source:

  • The SIFT Method
    • Stop
    • Investigate the source
    • Find better coverage
    • Trace claims, quotes, and media to their original source

There’s a theme that runs through all of four these moves: they are about reconstructing the necessary context!

It’s a good idea to begin your research with background resources designed to provide an overview of your topic (also known as reference, tertiary or synthesizing resources). These include: encyclopedias, dictionaries, compendia, atlases, and bibliographies.

Recommended Resource

  • Oxford Bibliographies Online: A database of research guides developed cooperatively with scholars and librarians worldwide, combining elements of an annotated bibliography and a high-level encyclopedia for a wide variety of subjects.
The world atlas of coffee: from beans to brewing

An overview of the geography, economy, and culture of coffee production and consumption. Organized by continent and then further by country or region.

Coffee: a comprehensive guide to the bean, the beverage, and the industry
Uncommon grounds: the history of coffee and how it transformed our world


CAB Abstracts [via Ovid]

Provides citations and abstracts to the international agricultural literature, including veterinary medicine, human and animal nutrition, forestry, rural development, as well as other related topics such as tourism and human ecology. Covers over 11,000 journals & conference proceedings and selected books in agriculture. Includes the collection, CAB Database PDFs: hard-to-find literature digitized for CAB Abstracts, 80% of which is not available electronically anywhere else. 

Coverage: 1910-present.

Agricola [via Ovid]

Published by the National Agricultural Library, Agricola covers all aspects of agriculture and allied disciplines including: animal science; veterinary science; entomology; plant science; forestry; aquaculture and fisheries; farming, farming systems and crops; agricultural economics; extension and education; food and human nutrition; and earth sciences and environmental sciences.

Coverage: 1970-present.  For earlier coverage, the Bibliography of Agriculture is the print index to the agricultural literature going back to 1942 located on the Shields Library, Third Floor, at call number Z 5071 .U63

AGRIS: International Information System for the Agricultural Sciences and Technology [via FAO]

AGRIS indexes world literature collected from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the the United Nations’ agricultural resource centres in over 100 countries worldwide. AGRIS covers all aspects of agricultural sciences and technology, including grey literature not available through normal publication and distribution channels, such as unpublished scientific and technical reports, theses, conference papers and government publications, FAO sales publications, main documents and project reports.

BIOSIS Previews [via Web of Science]

More than 25 million records in all life science areas, including agriculture, biochemistry, biomedicine, biotechnology, ecology, environmental sciences, genetics, microbiology, plant biology, veterinary medicine & pharmacology, and zoology. Indexes over 6000 journals, serials, books and book chapters, conference proceedings and patents.

Pubmed [via NCBI]

Covers medicine, life sciences, health administration, veterinary medicine, nursing, molecular biology and genetics. PubMed is a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.  Here you can find agronomic research on coffee (e.g. search for “Coffea”), chemical research to differentiate products by protected designation of origin, research on the effects of coffee on the human body, and more.

PubMed Tutorial & more
Alerts/Automatic Updating Service (Saving & Managing Searches)
NLM Searching PubMed with Mesh tri-fold handout [PDF]
NLM PubMed Basics tri-fold handout [PDF]

Coverage: 1946-present

Recommended Books

Coffee agroecology : a new approach to understanding agricultural biodiversity, ecosystem services and sustainable development

Coffee: growing, processing, sustainable production : a guidebook for growers, processors, traders, and researchers

Compendium of coffee diseases and pests

Coffee pests, diseases and their management

  • Ebook and print versions available.

Achieving sustainable cultivation of coffee: Breeding and quality traits

  • Ebook available


Food Science and Technology Abstracts(FSTA) [via Ovid]

Note: Allows 8 simultaneous users access — please LOGOFF when finished.

FSTA (Food Science and Technology Abstracts) is the world’s largest database of food science, food technology, and nutrition information. FSTA covers topics relating to every aspect of the food chain including all the major food commodities plus biotechnology, microbiology, food safety, additives, nutrition, packaging and pet foods. Covers over 1800 journals and patents, books, theses, conference proceedings, patents, standards, and legislation. Comprehensive coverage.

Recommended Resource

Sensory Lexicon: Unabridged definition and references

“Just like a dictionary reflects broad, expert agreement about the words that make up a given language,
the lexicon contains the tastes, aromas, and textures that exist in coffee as determined by sensory experts
and coffee industry leaders.” (From the introduction to Sensory Lexicon)



Agricultural Prices

Find crop-level prices received by farmers.  (Open Access)

National Agricultural Statistics Service

Find crop-level data on production levels, cultivated land area, costs of production.  Production reports include remarks on reasons for increase or decrease in yields.  (Open Access)


Find full text copies of scholarly research in agricultural economics including: agribusiness, food supply, natural resource economics, environmental economics, policy issues, agricultural trade, and economic development.

Coffee: World Markets and Trade

Published by the Foreign Agricultural Service, this biannual report includes data on U.S. and global trade, production, consumption and stocks, as well as analysis of developments affecting world trade in coffee.

Publication Coverage: Dec 11, 2004 to Dec 15, 2017


Global news and business information, including market reports.  Written for a business or popular audience, news items can highlight factors that affect agricultural production, trade, and distribution.

CIA World Factbook

The World Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.

World Bank Open Knowledge Repository

The World Bank open access portal to its publications and research from 189 member countries.  Example titles: Haiti Coffee Supply Chain Risk Assessment; Jamaica : Weather Insurance for the Coffee Sector Feasibility Study. 

Recommended Books

The coffee paradox : global markets, commodity trade and the elusive promise of development

  • E-book allows concurrent access to all users up to 365 uses

Beyond fair trade: how one small coffee company helped transform a hillside village in Thailand

Brewing change : behind the bean at Green Mountain Coffee Roasters

Brewing justice : fair trade coffee, sustainability, and survival

  • E-book available

Fair trade coffee : the prospects and pitfalls of market-driven social justice

  • E-book allows concurrent access to all users
  • UC Library Search: UCD Library Local Catalog Search
    Replacing UCD Library Catalog on July 27, 2021, the new UC Library Search enables you to search through all of the University of California libraries’ collections. By selecting the ‘Local Catalog’ setting your search will be limited to items available through the UC Davis libraries. If you Sign in (on top right corner) using your UCD login and Kerberos passphrase, you are prompted with your loan period, can renew books online, and request items that have been checked out to another borrower, or are in storage.
  • Understanding Call Numbers

    Author: Library Instruction Services, Shields Library

    Library of Congress Classification is used for all of the UCD libraries except the health sciences libraries (which use NLM — National Library of Medicine — classification). Learn about how books are arranged in the UCD libraries with this guide.

    Date: 2004



NEED a PRINT ONLY ITEM AND CANNOT COME TO CAMPUS?  We’ll ship it to you!  The UCD Libraries have a COVID-time-only shipping service in place.   Just click on the REQUEST link from the item you need and we’ll mail the whole item to you.  Make sure you have your correct address listed, when prompted.

ONLY NEED a chapter or an article from a PRINT ONLY ITEM?  Use the DIGITIZATION link but make a note of the specific chapter/article you need and include as much info as you can, especially page number, if available.


Specialty Databases

Specialty databases provide records and/or full access to literature in specific disciplines or themes.  They offer an efficient way to find credible resources on subjects like the nutritional qualities of coffee.

Many of these databases use their own set of terms to index articles, which you can use in a subject search. Remember to look for the thesaurus for the database you are using, or note which subject terms are attached to a relevant article, to discover how the concept you are looking for is described.

In deciding which database(s) to use, it is helpful to note:

  • What dates are covered? (e.g. How well is historical literature covered? Does it include articles published in the last year?)
  • What is the geographical scope of the coverage? Does that match your research interest?

Find a Print Journal

If you can’t go directly to an article, you can search the library catalog for the journal title (see Journals A-Z on the Advanced Search Page).  Some of our records include article-level information, but many only show which titles, years, and volumes we have.

Google Scholar

If there is a record of a journal article on the open internet, you can use Google Scholar to find it. Accessing the article may require you to go through your library subscription, or to find a physical copy in the library.

You can access library licensed articles directly in Google Scholar if you configure your Google Scholar settings to work with our library subscriptions.

Open your Google Scholar settings, and choose “Library Links” from the menu bar.

Search for and select the following:

University of California, Davis- Select “Get it at UC”

You can also add extensions/applications to legally access articles on the internet that are not provided through the library’s subscriptions.

Open Access Button

This extension searches for publicly available copies of articles, and (if none exists) asks the author to make a copy available.


This application searches a database of author-uploaded articles, and provides you a link to a free copy if one exists.