Everyone loves coffee, but did you know some of it originated in India?
Coffee’s past throughout the world has been a little complicated then again when isn’t any history complicated?
The history of coffee can be traced back centuries to ancient oral traditions in Africa. For thousands of years, nomadic tribes used coffee plants growing wild in Ethiopia. During prayers, Sufi monasteries in Yemen used coffee to help them concentrate.
It wasn't until the 14th century that coffee seeds were roasted. During cultivation, brewed coffee was reserved for the priesthood and for medical professionals. Doctors used them to treat patient's digestion and priests used them to stay alert throughout long nights of study.
Later, coffee spread to Europe, causing controversy about whether it was halal in Ottoman and Mamluk society. During the second half of the 16th century, coffee arrived in Italy via commercial Mediterranean trade routes and was only served to the rich. The Ottomans introduced coffee to Central and Eastern Europe.
India and the East Indies got it by the mid-17th century.
India's coffee history begins in the early 18th century, in what's now known as Karnataka state.
A Muslim pilgrim named Baba Budan from Chikmagalur district, Karnataka, smuggled seven coffee beans out of the Yemeni Port of Mocha in his beard and planted them in his courtyard. That’s some beard story… huh?
The Indian coffee industry began with these beans, which were the first coffee plants cultivated in the country.
Over the centuries, the Indian coffee industry has grown dramatically, with Arabica beans accounting for most of the production. Today, India is one of the leading coffee producers and exporters, with coffee estates across the country, including Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. India produces over 300 million kilograms of coffee every year, generating a revenue of almost a billion dollars.
It's interesting to note that Indian coffee comes from a variety of terrains and altitudes. A unique and sought-after taste distinguishes the beans grown in the highland regions of the Western Ghats. Contrary to that, Deccan plateau beans are milder.
Many rural farmers rely on coffee cultivation as their primary source of income, which makes the Indian coffee industry one of the biggest in the world.
In addition, Indian coffee culture is incredibly strong, with the classic "Indian filter coffee" a staple in households and cafes everywhere.The popular coffee brand Nescafe was launched in India in 1963. Nescafé’s popularity has led to it becoming one of the most followed consumer brands on social media in India.
While coffee may have originated in Ethiopia, India has played a big role in shaping the global coffee industry. The unique terrain and climate of the
country, combined with the hard work and dedication of its farmers, have made it possible for the country to produce some of the best coffee beans in the world.The rich coffee culture in India isn't to be missed!