By: Maygan Gough


The global spread of coffee growing and drinking began in the Horn of Africa, where, according to legend, coffee trees originated in the Ethiopian province of Kaffa. It is recorded that Kaldi the goatherd, discovered coffee after noticing his goats, upon eating berries from a certain tree, they became so spirited that they didn't want to sleep at night.

The First Coffeehouse

The first coffeehouses or Kaveh Kanes opened in Mecca. The Arabian coffeehouse's soon became a center of political activity and was suppressed. Over the next few decades coffee and coffeehouses were banned numerous times but kept reappearing until eventually an acceptable way out was found when a tax was introduced on both.
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Coffee was declared illegal 3 times by 3 different cultures. The first was in Mecca during the 16th century and the prohibition was lifted after 30 years of debate among scholars and jurists. The second was Charles the II in Europe banning coffee houses trying to quell the ongoing rebellion yet it backfired and was never enforced. The third was Fredrick the Great who banned the beverage in Germany in 1677 because he were concerned with the economic implications of money leaving the country on this new popular beverage.

Where it is today

Today coffee is grown in a multitude of countries around the world. Whether it is Asia or Africa, Central or South America, the islands of the Caribbean or Pacific, all can trace their heritage to the trees in the ancient coffee forests on the Ethiopian plateau.


  • Hawaii is the only U.S. state that commercially grows coffee
  • Brazil is the world's biggest producer of coffee
  • There are two types of beans Arabica and Robusta
  • Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee per day, equivalent to 146 billion cups per year