Facts about coffee

We found 22 facts about coffee

One of the most popular beverages in the world

Coffee is one of the staple foods and one of the most important commercial commodities in the world. Green, unroasted coffee is the most widely traded agricultural commodity, and the largest producers are Brazil, Vietnam, Colombia, and Indonesia. A morning cup of coffee is an integral part of the day for a huge number of people around the world. Studies have shown that, when drunk in moderate quantities, it has positive effects on the human body and medicinal properties. It certainly promotes the development and consolidation of interpersonal relations.

Coffee, Coffea is a genus of evergreen shrubs and trees in the marzipan family (Rubiaceane).

The beans derived from the coffee fruit, which are previously subjected to a process of roasting and later grinding, produce a beverage called coffee.

The coffee plant includes 104 species, most of which are native to Africa, with only a few from Asia.

Some species are cultivated.

Coffee as a crop has been cultivated since about 575 AD (originally in Africa) in plantations in the intertropical zone of Africa, South America, and Asia.

Coffee species that count in the world production market are:

  • Arabica (Coffea arabica), is native to Ethiopia, Mozambique, and the Great Lakes area of Africa. It provides about 80-90 percent of the world’s coffee production. It is most often grown on plantations in the intertropical zone of Africa, South America, Ceylon, Java, and Sumatra. It blooms and fruits throughout the year. The caffeine content of roasted arabica beans is about 1.5 percent. Because of its glossy leaves, white fragrant flowers, and colorful fruits, it is sometimes grown in pots and is an ornamental plant
  • Robusta (Coffea canephora), originated in Africa but is also grown in other areas of the world with warm climates. It is easier to grow than arabica, so it is cheaper to produce. It is more bitter and contains more caffeine than arabica coffee. Robusta is used in cheaper blends as a filler. It is used in the production of instant coffees and espresso blends. Its share of world production is about 30 percent
  • Liberica (Coffea liberica), is grown in Africa, Ceylon, Java, and Madagascar. It is characterized by greater resistance to pests compared to arabica and produces higher yields. It is, however, less aromatic. In world production, its share is about 1 percent.
The name “coffee” probably comes from the Arabic “kahwa” or Turkish “kahve,” although the etymology is not precisely known.

A second likely etymology of the word “coffee” is the name of the Ethiopian city of Kaffa (now Kefa), a well-known coffee-growing region. Into most European languages the word “coffee” penetrated from the Turkish “kahve,” from which in turn the Italian coffee was formed.

Coffee fruits were used as early as the 1st century BC in Ethiopia.

Coffee was likely discovered by the Oromo people living in Ethiopia’s Kaffa region, harvesting it from natural sites.

At first, it was cooked with butter and salt and consumed in this form.

In the 13th or 14th century, coffee beans were brought by Arab traders to Yemen, where it is likely that a method was developed to roast the seeds and make a beverage from them, which the Bedouins spread throughout Arabia.

With Arab expansion, the custom of drinking coffee spread throughout the Middle East.

At first, coffee was received with distrust, even its consumption was forbidden (in Mecca in 1511, and in Cairo in 1532).

However, the popularity of the beverage was so great that these bans were lifted.

In 1554, the first coffee shop opened in Istanbul.

In the 16th century, the Ottoman Empire, as a trade intermediary, became a coffee power.

The first European to describe coffee was the German botanist and traveler Leonhard Rauwolf.

His records show that coffee may have reached Europe as early as the 16th century thanks to imports by two East India companies: the British and the Dutch.

It probably did not appear in France until 1644, and the French elite had the opportunity to taste the drink in 1669 at a party given by Ottoman envoy Mustafa Pasha.

The first café in Paris was established in 1671, and by that time there were more than 3000 cafes in England.

The first coffee house in Boston opened in 1670.

Vienna boasted the first café thanks to a Pole, Franciszek Kulczycki, who opened a cafehaus there after the relief of Vienna in 1683.

Recently, however, it has been said that Kulczycki was not the first café owner in the Austrian capital, reportedly the Armenian Johannes Diodato.

By the end of the 19th century, Vienna had 1200 cafes.

In Salzburg, the first café was opened in 1703 and the café still exists today.

It is called Café Tomaselli and is the oldest café still in existence in Western Europe.

It was frequented by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Michael Haydn, Hugo von Hofmannsthal (writer and poet), and Max Reinhardt (theater director and actor).

In Europe, it was not always enthusiastically received.

As a product of the Arab world, it was seen as the work of Satan.

In the 17th century, coffee was even addressed by the then Pope Clement VIII, with whose permission the product entered the Christian community.

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the great colonial powers began cultivating coffee in their colonies.

The Netherlands established coffee plantations in Ceylon in 1658, later expanding cultivation to Java and from there to the entire Sunda Archipelago.

The first French plantations were established in Martinique, and also in French Guiana.

The first coffee plantations in Brazil were established in 1719.

The Portuguese stole coffee seedlings from Guyana and established plantations in Brazil, making coffee available to the masses, not just the elite, by 1800.

Throughout the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century, Brazil remained a major coffee producer, in fact, a monopoly.

Only in the following years did serious coffee producers become Colombia, Guatemala, and Indonesia.

Coffee is grown in more than 70 regions in the tropical zone between the northern tropic of Cancer and the southern tropic of Capricorn.

Seeds of the best quality are selected for cultivation–they come from trees between 8-15 years old. Seeds are sown as soon as possible after harvesting, up to 6 months. They begin to germinate about 40 days after sowing, and after 6 months the seedlings are transplanted from the nursery to the plantation. The coffee tree generally bears fruit for the first time after 3-4 years.

The harvested fruits are cleaned and processed.

There are two methods of extracting coffee beans from the fruit.

One is the wet method, in which the coffee fruit goes into a water-mill-like machine. There they are stripped of their skin and pulp, and then the hulled seeds are cleaned with a special grater. They later go to a fermentation tank, where they are soaked for about a day, after which they undergo drying.

The second method does not require water–the dry method, in which the seeds immediately go to heavily sunlit tables and dry on them for about a month. After this time, the seeds are cleaned in a dry mill.

Coffee is available in various forms.
  • Unroasted beans, the so-called “green” coffee
  • In roasted beans
  • Ground
  • Soluble (freeze-dried or dried by spraying in hot air)
There are also many ways to brew coffee.

Using machines with a slow flow of hot water under pressure, you can get espresso, latte macchiato, flat white, cappuccino, mocha, cafe latte, or espresso macchiato.

Without using increased pressure during brewing, you get filtered pour-over coffee.

You can also use instant coffee or so-called Turkish coffee (unfiltered).

In 1900, in the United States, the Hills Bros. company began packaging coffee in vacuum packs.

This procedure helped prolong the freshness of the coffee and was the driving force behind subsequent discoveries, for in 1901 Japanese chemist Satori Kato patented an innovative way to produce instant coffee (current reports say that it was David Strang in 1890 in New Zealand who first came up with the idea of producing instant coffee using hot air).

Also in 1901, Luigi Bezzera patented his first coffee maker and became an innovator in the field.

However, he could not sell it, only done by Desiderio Pavoni, who refined Bezzera’s invention and marketed it.

He presented it at a trade fair in Milan in 1906.

The first mention of cappuccino dates back to 1805, describing this type of brew as coffee with cream and sugar.

The initial name “Cappuccino” was associated with the light brown color of the coffee, which was similar to the shade of the Capuchin brother’s robes.

In Austria, however, it is said that it was the Italians who came up with the name “Cappuccino” and other countries simply adapted it for their market.

One of the most expensive coffees in the world is Kopi Luwak.

In 2013, a kilogram of this coffee cost between $200 and $400. This is because the annual world harvest of this coffee species is only 300-400 kilos.

The species is native to Southeast Asia (Sumatra, Java, Celebes, Philippines, Vietnam) and is made from coffee beans that are extracted from the feces of an animal from the weasel family, the palm weasel (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus), popularly known as civet, and locally as Luwak.

The weasel eagerly eats coffee fruit but does not digest its seeds, only the pulp. After being digested by digestive enzymes and slightly fermented by lactic acid-producing bacteria, the beans pass through the tickler’s digestive tract and are excreted.

The animals select the best fruits, passing through the digestive tract the beans lose their bitter taste, and the coffee produced from them has a mild aroma.

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