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Fun Facts about Coffee

March 2nd, 2009

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Coffee the Fun Facts

Coffee being one of the most precious commodities known to date is also known to kick start the day of many coffee worshipers.  Since, discovered somewhere on the lands of Ethiopia, coffee has enticed people with its ability to stimulate and lift the spirit.  Loved by so many, coffee has developed its own culture.  Across the world a coffee house or lets say ‘cafe’ can be found on every corner.  The high demand for the stimulant has grown into a multi-million dollar industry also stimulating the world’s economy.

The stimulating facts:

  • Coffee is only grown near the equator, from the Tropic of Cancer to the Tropic of Capricorn, within a 1,000 mile limit.
  • 1,200 different chemical components are in coffee.  More than half of these components make up the distinguished flavor of coffee.
  • There is between 80 and 140 milligrams of caffeine in a seven once cup of coffee.
  • 400 billion cups of coffee are consumed worldwide, making it the most popular beverage.
  • 91% of coffee consumed is taken at breakfast.  And sometimes is breakfast.
  • 79% of coffee consumed is served from the homes of coffee drinkers.
  • The second place where coffee is most consumed is in the workplace.
  • A coffee drinker averages 2-3 cups of coffee a day.

The funny story behind the coffee bean discovery;

Well, I don’t know if this is entirely true, but this story came up again and again during my research.  I thought you might get a kick out of it.  Speaking of kick; that is precisely how coffee was discovered.  It is said that a goat herder that herded goats somewhere in the lands of Ethiopia, awoke in the middle of the night to find his goats acting strangely and overly stimulated.  Kicking and jumping around, as in a state of delirium, the goat’s peculiar behavior kicked the curiosity of the goat herder.  The next day, the goat herder watched over the goats attentively to discover the foreign plant of what appeared to be some kind of berries that the goats were eating from.  The goat herder took a few for him-self and found him-self dancing into the wee hours of the night with the goats.  It just happened to be on a night when a wondering monk passed by taking notice of this goat herders night frenzy, he inquired about the excitement.  Well, you can imagine what happened next, the word got out.  And the precious berries spread like wild fire.

Some Coffee History Facts:

  • ‘Kaveh Kanes’ were the names of the first coffee houses set up in Mecca, which was the main place of trade for the berries.
  • Mocha is the name of the sea port that was a route to Mecca, which is where trades of coffee took place.  Coffee was a well guarded commodity and it was not allowed for any one to take fertile coffee plants out of the country.
  • An Arab author named Scheha Beddin, the Mufti of Aden were the first to drink coffee.  They lived during the 9th century.
  • Damascus, Syria, and Istanbul first opened coffeehouses around the 1530′s.  It wasn’t until 1554 that Turkey opened theirs.
  • “Bunnu” is the Arabic word for coffee bean.
  • The Dutch were the first to bring coffee out of Mocha and introduce it to the rest of the world.  Their first cultivation was in Ceylon, now known as Sri Lanka, in 1658.
  • An English chemist named George C. Washington, who lived in Guatemala, in 1906, invented the first instant coffee called “Red-E-Coffee.”  In 1909 his product hit the market.

The Make Up of Coffee

Coffee has about 500 genera and over 6,000 species.  Rubiaceae is the name of the botanical family for coffee.  These shrubs or sometimes tropical trees grow in the lower regions of forests.  There are related plants like the gardenia which contain an important substance, quinine.  On an economical level coffee has been the most popular of this botanical family.

Some Fun Facts on the Botanicals of Coffee:

  • Mid-18th century, Linnaeus, was the first to correctly describe the botanicals of coffee.
  • There are at least 25 major species.
  • These species are all indigenous to tropical Africa, some islands of the Indian Ocean, such as Madagascar.
  • Coffee is difficult to classify because of the many variations in plants and seeds.
  • 70% of the world’s production of coffee is from the plant of Arabica Coffea.
  • Second most produced is from the plant Canephora Coffea.

Coffee is best grown in certain regions in order to get the best productivity.  Here are the places and kinds of coffee that you probably drink today:

  • Mundo Novo is originally grown in Brazil.
  • Kent, was originally developed in India.
  • Blue Mountain is grown in Jamaica and Kenya.

Do you know why the physical properties of coffee are so important?

Incorporating the physical aspects of coffee plants and their beans will help to produce the best coffee drink.  Depending on their appearance, weight, size, volume, shape, color, solubility, moisture content, texture and so on, allow us to use the proper equipment and correct process suitable for the coffee bean.

  • When the coffee bean reaches a red color, that is an indicator of maturity and that it is ready to be harvested.
  • Color is also an indicator of the degree in which beans are roasted.
  • After beans have been dried to even moisture content right for storing, the beans are separated into grades by their size, shape, and color.
  • Moisture content is extremely important due to coffee being porous so it is highly susceptible to microscopic fungi, which affect taste and aroma.
  • Winnowing or floatation is the process used to physically separate and remove defective beans according to their density, also removing twigs and stones.

Coffee & Health

Here is some interesting and fun fact questions on coffee, see what you think:

Q: Can caffeine kill you?

A: Health experts say if you were to drink 80 to 100 cups real fast and all at once, it might do the trick.  This is not advisable to try at home!  So technically, coffee is not going to kill you.  You just may be up all night.

Q:  Can coffee be good for you?
A: Coffee actually contains important anti-oxidants, which is the way most Americans get there daily fix.  Coffee can be beneficial at about 1-2 cups per day.  If you don’t handle that amount of caffeine, well you can try black tea.  If that doesn’t suit you, you can find anti-oxidants in beans, bananas, or corn.

Q:  Can caffeine boost the female sex drive?
A: Actually, this study was done on rats and it worked!  But, for humans it is not necessarily true.  Some people who are not used to drinking coffee may find themselves more excited than usual.  I don’t know if it will lead you to this exact issue.  You won’t find someone offering a cup of coffee in a bar.

Q:  Does coffee relive pain?
A: A small study had shown that 2 cups of coffee alleviated the pain of post-gym muscle pain.  Take into consideration that this research was done on those who were not regular coffee drinkers.  Those of you who are big drinkers, you may be immune.

Q:  Can coffee keep you up at night?
A: Of course, why do you think so many are hooked on coffee?  Health experts say you shouldn’t drink coffee up to 6 hours before you plan to retire.

Q:  Does Decaf have caffeine?
A: Decaf coffee has an extremely small amount.  It would take about 5-7 cups to get the same amount of caffeine in 1 cup of coffee.

Q:  How are coffee beans made decaffeinated?
A: The way the caffeine is removed is by steaming the beans until the dissolved caffeine rises to the surface, then an organic solvent is used to wash the caffeine off.  The organic solvent is called methylene chloride.

Q:  What makes coffee so bitter?
A: It is amazing to find that it is actually the anti-oxidants that make coffee bitter.  It is not the caffeine.

Q:  What makes a great tasting coffee?
A: It is all in the roasting and brewing.  At 400º degrees of the roasting process, the beans begin to release its oil.   This oil strengthens the flavor.  And as for brewing; it depends on the coffee.  But, the longer coffee grounds steep, the more caffeine content you will have.  A cup of regular coffee often has more caffeine then a cup of espresso or cappuccino, and the darker the roast the most likely the more caffeine.

Q:  How was coffee discovered?
A: Remember the goats?  (At the beginning of this article)

More Fun Facts about Coffee

  • Did you know that coffee has no calories?  It is naturally a no calorie drink.
  • At one time “coffee” was a term for wine.  The drink became so popular and many turned to drink actual coffee for the fact it kept you awake rather than put you out, they gave the name to what we know as “coffee” today.
  • It takes about 45 coffee beans to make one shot of espresso.
  • In Japan, the Japanese bathe in fermented pineapple pulp mixed with coffee grounds for a beauty treatment that reduces wrinkles and tones the skin.
  • I say add a little coconut and have a pina-colada.
  • You can put some cold coffee or coffee grounds into the dirt of you ailing plants to revive them.
  • Because it takes 5 years for a coffee tree to reach maturity, and it only produces 1-2 pounds per tree, the price of coffee is significant.
  • “Coffee Day” is actually celebrated as a holiday in Costa Rica on September 12th and in Ireland on September 19th, and Japan actually has “Coffee Day” on October 1st.

How do you like your coffee?

I would like to share with you my favorite way to have a cup of coffee.  I didn’t realize it at first but I drink coffee for the comfort and warm emotions I shared with my grandmother as we drank coffee and shared my first cup.  Growing up, being an athlete, I wouldn’t go near the stuff.  After I was no longer using my athletic abilities I found myself sharing time with my grandmother working out the troubles of life.  That is where she offered me my first cup of coffee.  She asked how I would like my coffee.  I wanted it just like hers, real cream and two sugars.  I wanted to be just like her.  She is a woman I admire for her strength and ability to overcome great obstacles.  We sat and talked, it always made things seem better and troubles lighter.  Well, as my life went on and I didn’t spend so much time with my grandmother, I found myself reaching for that cup of coffee whenever I needed to work things out.  And when I would smell that coffee brewing in the coffee machine, I would remember the way I like my cup of coffee, real cream and two sugars.  And I would become that woman of strength and the ability to overcome whatever obstacle I faced that day.

Coffee has a history almost as long as ours.  But like most things coffee is great in moderation.  It has its benefits but should not be abused.  It has been related in history for its dramatic affect on people, in good ways and in not so good ways.  Learning the history and facts about the things we use today can give us the ability to see where these things fit in our lives and how we can find them most beneficial.

Coffee Joke Courtesy Of Gone-Ta-Pot.com:

At the data-entry company where I work, the other operators and I share a coffeepot. One morning I took it into the ladies room to fill it with water. Then I began preening in the mirror, brushing my hair and reapplying some makeup. I didn’t realize how long I’d been until someone slid a note under the door.

“You win,” it read. Any ransom demand will be met. Just release the coffeepot.”

  1. March 3rd, 2009 at 15:41 | #1

    Thanks great post

  2. Jim LeBlanc
    June 16th, 2010 at 14:34 | #2

    fun facts about coffee actually says “and the darker the roast the most likely the more caffeine”.
    this is an error. think how dark can you roast coffee
    when you get to charcoal it must have the most right?
    wrong green coffee has the most at some point it is more easily released by brewing but the darker it is roasted the less caffein and other properties it will have.
    Dancing Crane Coffee House

  3. April 13th, 2011 at 16:04 | #3

    the story was cool

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