Here are some incredible, and widely unknown, facts about coffee!
Chewed, not brewed
It's difficult, naturally, to pinpoint exactly when coffee first started being consumed by humans. It's broadly accepted however that the practice began in Ethiopia. A common story tells that a shepherd, often named Kaldi, first observed the coffee cherries being eaten by some of the goats within his herd.
He tried it for himself and appreciated the bold flavour, as well as the caffeine buzz. The story goes that it wouldn't be drunk until a monk decided to make a bitter brew by pouring boiling water over the coffee cherries - and the rest is history. By the 14th Century, the practice of roasting the beans had become widespread, and by the 17th Century, coffee had become one of the world's favourite beverages.
A highly prized commodity
Coffee beans are actually the seeds found inside the fruit of the coffee tree. You probably knew that already, but what you may not have known is that next to oil, they're the world's most frequently traded and continually sought-after commodity.
Roughly 11 million hectares of farmland produce the 12 billion pounds of coffee consumed around the world every year. It's thought that the global coffee trade employs over 25 million people over a spread of fifty countries - something to think about with your next morning brew.
The city that never sleeps, really doesn't sleep
You've doubtless heard of New York referred to as the "city that never sleeps". Several other cities have been described as such, but if you've ever visited New York you'll understand why it's the original city to bear that moniker.
Have you ever thought why that is? It could well have something to do with the fact that, studies have shown, New Yorkers drink on average nearly seven times as much coffee as the average person. This could be down to a number of reasons, but the sheer volume of great coffee shops probably has something to do with it.
This coffee tastes like...nevermind
You might be forgiven for thinking the most expensive coffee in the world is specially grown, lovingly harvested, tenderly processed, and treated with the most incredible care and attention. The reality is, well, quite different, and it comes from Indonesia.
The most expensive coffee in the world is often known as Kopi Luwak. The coffee bean is eaten by a wild cat, named the Luwak. The beans are then passed through the Luwak's digestive system, and ultimately its bottom, where the scat is collected by local farmers and processed. It's prized for its rarity and unique flavour.
Something to consider while you sip
Hopefully, now you understand a few of the lesser known, and quirky, facts about the world's most popular beverage - after all this reading, you deserve a coffee!