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Coffee is the second most traded global commodity after oil.
In Africa, raw coffee beans are made into a kind of sweet to chew by being flavoured with spices
As you might expect, it’s the Americans who top the charts for coffee consumption, with an estimated 450 million daily cups. Only an estimated 52% of the population drink it, though.
The US city where you expect to find the most coffee houses is Seattle.
Although coffee bushes fruit from their second year, it takes five years for them to grow to full maturity. Their normal lifespan is around 15 to 20 years, but some have reached 60 years.
Each coffee bush yields sufficient beans annually to make around 0.5kg of roasted coffee.
Coffee hasn’t always been popular. It was banned in Mecca in Saudi Arabia as it was believed to encourage radical thinking. When it arrived in Europe in the 16th century, the Church lobbied for coffee to be banned due to its stimulating effect. Famously, though, the then pope, Clement VII, tasted to and pronounced it delicious. After this papal blessing, coffee houses began to spring up all over Europe.
A standard cup of coffee contains around 150 milligrams of caffeine. For most people, this is a ‘therapeutic dose’, or the amount needed to have an effect.