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morning coffee
many names
livelihood
brief history
Coffees Of The World
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Coffees Of the World

How much thought goes into our morning coffee?

Ever stop and think where it comes from or the hard work it takes to make that cup you may be drinking as you read this?

Those are two very good questions that I will be happy to answer. In the following paragraphs I will tell a story and go into some detail about coffees of the world.

I will give brief coffee history facts and talk about coffees around the world an the process of producing the most popular beverage on the planet. Not to mention the people and communities around the world who's livelihood depend on it.

The History, 1800 - 2000 years ago a goat herder in Ethiopia noticed how his goats would act strangely (hyperactive) after eating a red berry. The goat farmer gathered some of the berries, he try to eat one but there was not much to eat, there was a pit, a seed in the middle. He then began to experiment and made a soup that was quite good. Though he was not able to use the seed in the middle, he discarded them. Many years had passed maybe a hundred or two.The berries had become popular among the people. Seeds from this red berry were thrown into a fire and they gave off a nice aroma when roasted, curiosity lead to more experimentation. It was realized that when roasted, grown down and mixed with water it made very nice drink that gave you energy.

Over the century's it has evolved into what we know today. Of coarse over the years it has taken on many names and use's.

It had become very well known through out Africa and many Mediterranean country's within 500 years. More and more traders where transporting it further into Asia and Europe. By the 15 - 1600's It was quickly becoming one of the most traded products in the eastern part of the world. As it's popularity grew, so did the need to grow it.

The plants were being transported to be grown in other parts of the world where the climate was good enough to support a healthy growth. By the 1700's it had been introduced in Columbia. Plantations were popping up everywhere in subtropical climates around the world. Asia, India, Africa, Central and South America and Islands all around the equator.

In the 1800's it was really becoming a globally traded product that everyone wanted to have. Being shipped to nearly every country and coastal city. There were thousands of coffee houses and gathering places to sit and socialize while drinking coffee and tea. At that time it was the most traded commodity in the world and it remains as one of the most traded to this day.

Countries that produce the most coffee, starting with the highest production to the least. Brazil, Vietnam, Columbia, Indonesia, Ethiopia, India, Mexico, Guatemala and Peru they are the nine top coffee producing countries in the world. Brazil produces over 5.5 billion pounds and Peru produces just under 500 million pounds. That is a staggering amount and just the tip of the iceberg. Over 40 countries produce and estimated 35 billion pounds of coffee every year. That does not count the smaller growers who grow 100,000 lbs or less. It has become a huge market since the goat herder discovered them almost 200 years ago.

Small growers and giant plantations alike struggle to survive with fluctuations in coffee trade prices. Small communities around the world are being robbed of there livelihood. Being paid less for the product that they work long hours to grow and cultivate, these people rely on the export of the crop to support there families. The low amount they are paid, thousands of farmers are forced to quit because they can not afford to buy the supplies needed to maintain a healthy crop. Due to these devastating situations around the world' there is a foundations that is slowly starting to help farmers save there farms. By putting stricter trade laws in place to give a fair price for coffee crops exported. Fair trade International has made a big difference in coffee growing communities. They help farmers receive a fair price for the coffee.

Recap, i think i touched base on the questions i had ask in the first paragraph, with a little history. Being the most popular beverage on the planet, do you think 50% of the people that have there morning cup of coffee give any thought to where that coffee came from or the history behind it?

Sip and relax, it's coffee time...

Thomas

Leave Your Comments or Questions below :)


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