Do you want to know some interesting facts about coffee?
There are few people in the world that don’t enjoy coffee. Many like to drink it first thing in the morning to give themselves a boost, while others might go out to a café and drink it just to unwind. Coffee has been enjoyed for a long time, but what else is there to the drink besides its delicious smell, strong flavor, and energy-boosting powers?
Interesting Facts about Coffee
1 . Coffee has been around since 800 A.D., and it not might have the origins you expect. It is believed that around this time period, a goat herder noticed that his goats became especially jumpy when they ate the products of the Coffea plant. The goat herder likely spread the word about this strange plant, and soon enough, a monk decided to make a drink from the fruits of the Coffea plant, discovering that the drink could keep him awake throughout the night1.
2 . In America where coffee is such a common and sought-after commodity, you probably wouldn’t believe that only two states produce coffee beans. Kona coffee is America’s staple coffee strain and it is traditionally grown in Hawaii where the temperature is perfectly warm for coffee plants and the soil is rich with volcanic materials. However, Kona coffee is also grown in some parts of California.
3. With a Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts on every corner (along with every other fast-food restaurant that sells coffee), the drive-throughs especially packed during the mornings, it might be hard to believe that America is not the world’s top coffee consumer. Instead, that impressive title goes to Finland, with 12 kilograms per capita of coffee consumed per year2. The United States is only number 26 on the list of coffee consumption per year!
4. Coffee is not just a drink to keep you awake; it is actually very healthy for you. It is packed with antioxidants and plenty of beneficial nutrients like magnesium and potassium, but more than that, studies have shown that coffee may be able to boost your metabolism which could lead to an increased rate of fat-burning and weight loss. Some studies have even started to link coffee with protection against Alzheimer’s disease and certain kinds of cancer2.
5. Coffee beans are not the fruit of the coffee plant. In fact, the beans are seeds! The fruit of the coffee plant looks like a kind of red berry, and they are just as edible as the delicious seeds. In the past, some people have even tried fermenting the fruits to create a type of wine.
6. Kopi luwak, also known as cat poop coffee (could an article about coffee be complete without talking about cat poop coffee?) is one of the most expensive kinds of coffee in the world, with an average price of $100 per cup. The coffee beans that go into making this kind of coffee are–luckily–not digested by any old mangy cat. Instead, an indigenous Indonesian cat-like animal is responsible for eating the fruits of coffee plants, digesting the fruit pulp, and allowing the coffee beans to ferment in its digestive system for a short time. Once the beans reappear in the world, coffee farmers wash them, dry them, and roast them so they are ready to be brewed2.
7. Coffee was baptized in 1600 by the Pope Clement VII. This was a response to some Italian clergymen at the time who convinced themselves that coffee was a satanic beverage and wanted to outlaw it. However, Pope Clement VII obviously loved the energetic drink too much to let that happen1.
8. While it may seem there is a near infinite number of variations of coffee, there are really only two main types: Robusta and Arabica. Robusta is typically cheaper and more bitter than Arabica, although it does have a higher caffeine content. Arabica coffee is renowned for its smooth flavor.
9. If someone were to ask you what country produced the most coffee in the world, you probably wouldn’t guess Brazil. Amazingly, Brazil produces a third of the world’s coffee supply alone. The country directly behind Brazil in coffee production is Vietnam, but even so, Brazil still produces twice as much as Vietnam does.
10. While it may seem like coffee is a highly industrialized market, the majority of coffee is produced by small farmers. This is likely because the cultivation, harvesting, and processing of coffee plants and beans is a very delicate process and must be handled (by hand) with the utmost care2. Now, you know all the most interesting facts about coffee!
- Hawkins, A. & Picard, C. (2018). “21 Surprising Coffee Facts That Will Perk Up Your Afternoon.” GoodHousekeeping. Retrieved from https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/diet-nutrition/a30303/facts-about-coffee/.
- Demarest, A.A. (2018). “10 facts you should know about coffee, including how to get the most caffeine.” Insider. Retrieved from https://www.insider.com/coffee-facts-you-didnt-know-2018-12.