Do you ever wonder how coffee became the second most traded commodity on the planet? Coffee has traces that stem back thousands and thousands of years and the rise of coffee seems well deserved.
850 - 1000
Coffee’s history goes so far back we have a legendary story. The year is 850 with an Arabian shepherd named Kaldi. He stumbled across his goat dancing happily around a green leafed and red berry bush. From this Kaldi quickly realised the stimulant effect that these so called ‘berries’ had. Kaldi then moved them onto monks and monasteries around the country and by the year 1000 another physician and philosopher Mr Bukhara wrote an extract based on how coffee can be used as medicine.
1100 - 1500
Arab traders now found their way to Ethiopia and were the first to take coffee and start it as a trade. Coffee swiftly developed from 1000 to the 1400 as it was being grown in the Yemini district of Arabia and by the 1500’s Persia, Syria and Turkey! Public houses were now opened so people could go there in order to drink coffee proving to be a hugely popular medium for all kinds of socialising. Vast amounts of people visited every year, whilst wine was now expanding and reaching far ends of the world.
1600 – 1700
By the 1600’s coffee had travelled all the way to Europe, becoming unsurprisingly popular. Coffee quickly became a controversial topic as it gained the name ‘Bitter invention of Satan’. Through tasting the Pope Celement VIII realised that coffee was extremely satisfying and approved meaning coffee was no longer associated with ‘Satan’. Coffee houses were now taking over Europe as they again became the centre of socialising and London would eventually hold 300 coffee houses, fascinating merchants, artists and even sailors. New Amsterdam – or New York was the next location.
The demand for coffee became larger and Arabs were facing stiff competition from outside of Saudi Arabia. Even though the Arabs tried to keep their coffee empire, the Dutch succeeded where the Arabs failed. The Dutch tried to plant seeds in places such as India, whilst they failed on that attempt they brought coffee to the island of Martinique where in the next 50 years they would grow over 18 million coffee trees!
Travellers, traders and colonists have travelled far and wide in order to plant coffee in the most profitable locations. Plantations have now developed in mountains, crops have been opened up by the sun and new countries have been born because the money coffee has produced. By the 1800’s coffee had now become one of the world’s most valuable and profitable crops.