Coffee. The energising nectar fuels the daily lives of adults everywhere. There aren’t many things out there that have the unifying effect of the hot bitter stuff. It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that coffee is what makes the world go round. It’s second nature now in the morning: Wake up, get a shower, then hit the cupboards for your tub of instant or coffee beans to kick the day off.

 

Coffee shops are everywhere. You can get coffee at any restaurant or bar. In short, coffee is all around us. Its availability and universality are taken for granted. Here we look at the origins of coffee, both in history and in the modern coffee bean-producing nations.

 

 

Coffee History 

 

The cultivation and consumption of coffee beans have a long and rich history. Before being shipped around the world in the colonial era, the use of the precious bean had been long established in areas of Africa and The Middle East.

 

Early Uses

 

The origin of the use of the bean in history is routed in Ethiopia. Early ancestors of modern-day Ethiopian ethnic groups are said to have cultivated coffee plants for its reenergising effect first. Early uses of coffee to make a beverage go back to the 12th century CE when Islamic Scholar Al-Shadhili visited Ethiopia. Legend says he saw highly energised birds feasting on berries. After trying the berry for himself, he also experienced the same feeling. His disciple, Omar, is said to have come across the drink by boiling the coffee beans to soften them for human consumption.

 

Coffee was first widely consumed in the Islamic world, where it took on a religious significance. It was associated with Ramadan, and many legends attributed its discovery to the prophet Muhammad

 

Coffee Around the World 

 

By the 15th century, coffee had spread throughout the whole of the middle east via Yemen. After washing over the Islamic world, the drink arrived in Europe by way of Italy (now famous above all other European nations for the love and mastery of coffee). From here, the Dutch began to take it around the world, from Asia to the Americas.

 

 

 

 

The Bean Belt 

 

There are three predominant regions for growing coffee in the world: Africa, The Middle East, and Southeast Asia, and Central and South America. This area along the equator is known as the bean belt. The majority of coffee is grown in the world comes from this area. Coffee produced in each area provides a distinctly different flavour, as a result of climatic conditions.

 

Africa 

 

The African coffee regions are Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, and Uganda. Coffee from these regions has a floral, fruity aroma and a unique flavour. The majority of African coffee comes from Kenya, but Ethiopia is also a large-scale producer, with 3% of the world’s coffee coming from the region.

 

The Middle East 

 

Just over the Red Sea from Ethiopia, Yemen is a major coffee producer in the middle east. Due to its geography, the coffee produced in Yemen is very similar to the bright, fruity, smooth, and chocolatey beans found in Ethiopia.

 

Southeast Asia 

 

Coffee has been produced in Southeast Asia since the late 17th century, particularly in Vietnam and Indonesia. The distinctive nutty, smooth flavours of the coffee produced in the Indonesian Islands are commonly used around the world. Vietnam is the second-largest exporter of coffee in the world, with several varieties growing in the area.

 

Central/South America 

 

The coffee produced in central and south America is widely known for its mild, medium-bodied, well-balanced flavour. Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, and Ecuador are the producers of coffee in the region, with Brazil being the highest producer of coffee in the world.

 

Africa 

 

The African coffee regions are Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, and Uganda. Coffee from these regions has a floral, fruity aroma and a unique flavour. Most African coffee comes from Kenya, but Ethiopia is also a large-scale producer, with 3% of the world’s coffee coming from the region.

 

The Middle East 

 

Just over the Red Sea from Ethiopia, Yemen is a major coffee producer in the middle east. Due to its geography, the coffee produced in Yemen is very similar to the bright, fruity, smooth, and chocolatey beans found in Ethiopia.

 

Southeast Asia 

 

Coffee has been produced in Southeast Asia since the late 17th century, particularly in Vietnam and Indonesia. The distinctive nutty, smooth flavours of the coffee from the Indonesian Islands are prevalent Globally. Vietnam is the second-largest exporter of coffee in the world, with several varieties growing in the area.

 

We Take Coffee for Granted

 

Large parts of the world are so used to going into the kitchen, popping the kettle on, and making a cup of your favourite brew, but pay no mind at the distances it takes to get to our cupboards. For centuries the fertile areas such as Ethiopia have been a hotbed for the bean.

 

 

To celebrate International Coffee Day this Friday, we will be giving 25% off coffee filters! Check out our socials and keep up to date to find out the code.