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The History of our Beloved Coffee Beans

Honcho Coffee Supplies – your coffee experts!

We have all come to love the ritual of waking up in the morning, wiping our weary eyes and heading for a cup of coffee to help us bounce into our day. But have you ever stopped to think about the real origins of coffee? Who was that genius that saw those deep brown beans and thought, I might just roast, crush and brew these… well we get to the bottom of that mystery for you.

Legend says that a goat herder in Ethiopia first discovered the potential of the humble coffee bean. Kaldi, the goat herder noticed that after eating the berries from this certain tree, his goats became so energetic that they didn’t want to sleep at night. After noticing the strange phenomenon, Kaldi reporting his hunch to the abbot of the local monastery, who made a drink with berries and found that it kept him wide awake through the long hours of evening prayer. The information fast spread around the monastery and then beyond, quickly reaching the east to the Arabian Peninsula where the journey across the globe truly began.

Coffee beans history

By the 15th Century coffee was being grown in Arabia and then by the 16th Century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria and Turkey. Coffee fast became the drink to enjoy while engaging in conversation, listening to music, watching entertainers, playing chess and sharing local news stories. With many pilgrims visiting the holy city of Mecca each year and enjoying the invigorating beans, coffee soon became known as the ‘wine of Araby’.

Europe welcomed coffee by the 17th century and the popularity of the drink continued to grow. Some people were concerned about the energising qualities of coffee they began calling it the ‘bitter invention of Satan’, however this was quickly squashed as Pope Clement VIII tasted the beverage for himself and gave it the nod of approval. Coffee then replaced beer and wine as the common breakfast drink, mainly due to the fact that those who drank coffee instead of alcohol were more productive and produced better work.

By the mid 1700’s coffee had made its way to Brazil as Francisco de Mello Palheta was sent by the emperor to French Guiana to get coffee seedlings but the French were not willing to share. Fortunately for the future of coffee, the French Governor’s wife was captivated by Francisco’s good looks and gifted him with a large bouquet of flowers with enough coffee seeds buried inside to begin what is today a billion-dollar industry.

By the end of the 18th Century, coffee beans had continued to spread across new lands, with plantations established across the globe. Fortunes were made and lost over the years as coffee became one of the world’s most profitable exports. After crude oil, coffee has become the most sought after commodity in the world.

So, the next time you sip that godly brew that helps fuel your day, spare a moment to remember the journey the humble coffee bean has been on. From the goat herder in Ethiopia, to getting the tick of approval from the Pope to the Governor’s wife secretly sharing the beans after being smitten by the travelling Brazilian. With an historic journey, we can be thankful that our day begins with what Thomas Jefferson referred to as “the favourite drink in the civilised world”.

Get in Touch With Us!

You can visit our website to watch videos offering tips and tutorials related to brewing coffee and using different coffee machines and equipment. Perfect for those who wish to watch and learn.

Also, we constantly update our blog and our Instagram page @honchocoffeesupplies to keep you in the know with the world of coffee at all times. You can also stay in touch with us on our Facebook page.

For more information on different types of coffee machines and accessories, visit us at Honcho Coffee Supplies.

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