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Faculty of Management, Economic Engineering in Agriculture and Rural



Origins of Coffee

Coffee drinking first

became popular in Yemen
in the 15th century
Coffee derives its name
from Arabic
Qahwah is the Arabic word
for coffee and Turkish
influence resulted in
pronunciation as qahveh
Italian origin- Caffe but is
derived from Turkish, which
derives from Arabic
Qahwah is the name given
to coffee in Arabic but
means wine

Coffees True Origin

Coffee is not a native

plant to Arabia
It is a native plant of
Abyssinia (Ethiopia)
and can be found
growing wild and
From Ethiopia it was
brought to Arabia and a
variety of legends exist
to how coffee was

Where is Coffee Grown?

The top ten coffee producers are highlighted in

Brazil makes up a third of this production and is
by far the largest producer in the coffee
producing market
The Bean Belt- bounded by the Tropics of Cancer
and Capricorn, coffee is grown within the Tropics
How did coffee get to all these locations?

The Spread of Coffee


began to leave Africa via two

trade routes, one located at Masawa, a
city in Ethiopia located on the Red Sea
and down the Blue Nile to Khartoum
Coffee is not said to have spread
outside of Africa and Arabia until the
1600s and Arabia was known to make
export beans infertile by boiling them

Coffee in Europe

There are many

legends to how
coffee spread into
Arrived strapped to
the belly of an
Indian smuggler
who left Mecca with
the seeds and
initiated agricultural
expansion of the

For about a half a

century Arabia
supplied Europe with
all coffee consumed
and was considered a
luxury item by British
Coffee was supplied
to the Europeans by
the old Dutch East
India Company that
traded with the
Arabian ports on the
Red Sea

Shift in Coffee Ideology

During early cultivation coffee was

restricted to remote parts of Yemen and was
still considered as a resource for merchants
who could profit and governments who
profited through taxes
Social and political consequences were few
and consisted of:
Coffee in Islam?
Concerns with coffee houses as centers for
conspiracy and deception


However, this changed

with the introduction
of coffee into
European colonies and
control of production
by commercial capital

Latin America

Produces more than

twice as much coffee
as the rest of the
world combined

The Coffee Elite

The coffee elite formed in the midst of the 19th

century coffee dynasties and was built at the
expense of much of the rest of the population
Resembles those of the colonial aristocracies
Focused in Central America in the countries of El
Salvador, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua

Coffee Elite


The coffee elite was made up of aristocratic

families of pure decent and new European
Around two or three families control the entire
coffee industry
How do these families remain in power?
Lawless military regimes that make family ties the
only safe way to gain political power
Absence of mass parties and effective
parliamentary institutions
Limited development of higher education,
professional education could only be acquired

Transnational Corporations

is controlled by 4 coffee
Kraft foods, Nestle, Procter&Gamble,
and Sara lee
These companies produce the major
coffee brands: Maxwell House, Nescafe,
Folgers, and Douwe Egberts
Nestl's instant coffee alone is
consumed at a rate of 3,900 cups of
coffee every second

Instant Coffee

Latin American countries are attempting to make

changes to respond to the growing instant coffee
Three Latin American countries (Brazil, Columbia,
and Ecuador) have become significant exporters of
instant coffee
Benefits from this change over have been limited
because of transnational corporations
Local Exporters face many challenges:
Inability to fund large advertising campaigns
Compete with brand names
Distribute to large market

Coffee and the Ecosystem

Traditionally a shade grown

crop that is grown under a
canopy of trees
These shade trees provide
an excellent source of
The new modern system
however, emphasizes the
use of pesticides and the
increase in chemical inputs
to retain high yields
more prone to water and
soil runoff and long term
damage of the soil

Problems in Coffee Growing

70% of the worlds coffee

in grown on farms of less
than ten hectares and the
vast majority is grown on
family plots of between
one and five hectares
Coffee is grown in the wide
tropical and sub-tropical
belt around the Equator,
including some of the
countries who face severe
development challenges

Fair Trade-Offers Hope

Small landholders struggle to feed their

families from the income they make from
Peris Mwihaki coffee grower in Kenya. In last
years her coffee cherries have brought her no
more than 2-3% of the final selling price of
Kenyan AA coffee on supermarket shelves in
the North
Payments dont reach us here in the hills,
Peris explained. The farm is just as hard work
as it ever was, were getting nothing in return

Fair Trade

Commercial businesses
that develop relationships
with farmers and are
interested in improving the
lives of those farmers from
which they buy from
Commitment is to pay
farmers a fair price and
what they deserve from
producing that product
The price must cover the
costs of production and
must also be stabile
Fair trade coffee sales are
growing and in 2001 coffee
grew by 12 %