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Evolution Of Coffee Culture In United States

2791 words (11 pages) Essay in History

25/04/17 History Reference this

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O Coffee! Thou dost dispel all care, thou are the object of desire to the scholar. This is the beverage of the friends of God. “In Praise of Coffee”, Arabic Poem (1511). Everyone knows what a coffee is. Especially since coffee became a essential drink in everyday for most of the people in the world. Nowadays when we walk down any street, we see at least two or more coffee shops with full of people drinking coffee. Since I was very little, I always wondered, how coffee made and how it become the coffee business became one of the most valuable commodity industry in the world. When you search it, you find that this commodity we call coffee is a basicly a berry containing seeds. Yet coffee is the second most valuable exported legal commodity on earth (after oil of course), providing world’s most widely taken psychoactive drug.

Coffee provides a livelihood for over twenty million humans beings around the world. It is an incredibly labor-intensive crop, with all but very small percentage requiring the individual human hand.

The irony of the coffee industry is that the vast majority of those who perfom repetitive tasks work in the most beautiful places on earth, with tropical volcanic peaks as backdrop in a climate thtat have a temperature of 27 °C but these laborers earn an evarage of 3 dollars a day. The coffee they prepare travels halfway around the world and lands on breakfast tables, officer and cafes of the England, Germany, United States and and other developed countries, where these cosmopolitan consumers pay half a day’s Third World countries wages for a good cup of coffee.

People who make money from coffee doesn’t stop in just producing. There are also the exporters, importarts, amd roasters. There are the expert slurping, savoring, and spitting coffee. There are the retailers, the vending machine suppliers, the marketers, the advertising copyrighters, the consultants. This is why it is the second most valuable commodity on earth because they are many opportunities to earn money just from a sack of coffee beans.

Beginning as a medicinal drink for the elite group of people, coffee became the favored modern stimulant of worker during their break, the gossip starter in kitchens. Coffeehouses have provided places to plan revolutions, write poetry, do business and meet friends. For example United States’s first black president’s inaugural speech was written by a young man, age 27, in a Starbucks. Without noticing, he wrote a historical speech, which will probably be analysed in future,was written in a common coffeehouse.

Around the world we are currently witbessing a coffee revival as miniroasters revive the art of coffee blending and customers rediscover the josy of fresh-roasted, fresh brewed coffee made from the best beans in the world. Coffee has assumed a social meaning that goes far beyond the simple black brew in a cup. The worldwide coffee culture is more than a culture-it is psychological addiction. There are newsgroup on the subject, along with countless number of sites on World Wide Web, and Starbucks outles populate every street corner, fighting for space with other coffeehouses and chains. And after all is said and done, it’s just a bag of berry from an Ethiopian shrub.

This essay is about the coffee culture and its effect in United States. Coffee is a term used to describe a social atmosphere that depends heavily upon coffee shops, espressoin particular, to act as a social lubricant. It is a common tradition in American culture to spend their time in coffeeshops. I will explain the impacts of coffee and its culture in American people and media.

History of Coffee

Coffee makes us severe, and grave and philosophical “Jonathan Swift, 1722”

Possibly the cradle of mankind, now called Ethiopia, is the birthplace of coffee. Situated at the conjunction of the African and Arab worlds known as the Horn of Africa, the mountainous country has a biblical quality. There are lots of story of how coffee discovered with different perspectives thus we do not know exactly when or by whom coffee discovered. Between the various Ethiopian and Arab legends, the most appealing story involves dancing goats. A goatherd named Kaldi loved following the wandering paths made by his goats as they combed the mountainsides for food. His job didn’t require him to do much, so he was free to make up songs and to play his pipe. In the late afternoon, when he blew a special, piercing note, his goats scampered from their browsing in the forest to follow him back home.

One afternoon, however, the goats did not come. Kaldi blew his pipe again. Still no goats. Puzzled, the boy climbed higher, listening for them. Finally he heard bleating in the distance.

Running around the corner of a narrow trail, Kaldi suddenly came upons the goats. Under the thich rain forest canopy, which allowed the sun to sift through in suddent bright splotches, the goats were running about, butting one another, dancing on their hind legs, and bleating excitedly. As he watched, one goat after another chewed doff the glossy green leaves and red berries of a tree he had never seen before. The goats refured to come home with hiö until hours later. The next day, they ran directly back to the same grove and repeated the performance. This time Kaldi decided it was safe to him to join them. First, he chewed on a few leaves. They tasted bitter. As he masticated them, however, he experienced a slow tingle, mocing from his tongue down into his gut, expanding to his entire body. Next he tried the berries. The fruit was midly sweet, and the seed that popped out were covered with a thich, tasty mucilage. Finally, he chewed the seeds themselves.

Soon, according to legend, Kaldi was dancing and playing with his goats. He felt that he would never be tired or grouchy again. Kaldi told his father about the magical tree, the word spread, and soon coffee became an integral part of Ethiopian culture. By the time Rhazes, an Arabian physican, first mentioned coffee in print in the tenth century, it probably had been deliberately cultivated for hundred of years.

It is likely that, as in the legend, the beans and leaves of bunn, as coffee was called, at first were simply chewed, but the inventive Ethiopians quickly graduated to more palatable ways of getting their caffeine fix. Probably in the sixteenth century, someone roasted the beans, ground them and made a infusion. Coffee as we know it came into being.

Once the Ethiopians discovered coffee it was only a matter of time until the drink spead through trade with the Arabs across the narrow band of Red sea. The Arabs took to the stimulating drink. They began culvivating the trees, complete wit irrigation ditches calling it qahwa, an Arab word for wine-from which the name coffee derives. At first the Arab monks adopted coffee as a drink that would allow them to stay awake for midnight prayers more easily.While coffee was considered a medicine or religious aid, it soon enough slipped into everyday use.

As the drink gained popularity throughout the sixteenth century, it also gained its reputation as a troublemaking social brew. Many rulers decided that people were having too much fun in coffeehouses. In the end rulers and religious leaders denounced coffee during this century. But these bans didn’t took long.

Coffee provided an intellectual stimulant, a pleasant way to feel increased energy without any apparent ill effect. Coffeehouses basicly allowed people to get together for conversation, entertainment, and business, inspiring agreements, poetry, and irrevenrence in equal measure. So important did the brew become in Turkey that a lack of sufficient coffee provided grounds for a woman to seek a divorce.

The Ottoman Turks occupied Yemen in 1536, and soon afterward coffee bean became an important export throughout the Turkish Empire. Then through the Ottoman traders coffee beans came to Europe. At first Europeans didnt know what to make of the stange new brew. In 1610 travelling British poet Sir George Sandys noted that the Turks sat “chatting most of the day” over their coffee, which he described as “blacke as soote, and tasting not much unlike it”. Then I can briefly that coffee beans went through many places. Coffee went to France through the Turkish ambassador. Later on coffee came to Vienna through Turkish army while threatening to invade Europe. When Turkish troops failed in the siege of Vienna, Franz George Kolschitzky took all the coffee and opened the first Viennese cafe.

After coffee became a famous drink in Europe, the North American colonists emulated the coffe boom of the mother country, with the first American house opening in Boston in 1689. Here, over many cups of coffee and other brews, John Adams, James Otis, and Paul Revere met to foment rebellion, prompting Daniel Webster to call it “the headquarters of the Revolution”. This is the first proof of that coffee’s effect to American Culture.

Coffee in America

We have joined in many a march in old Virginia, when the days were long and hot, and the power of the soldiers to endure the fatigue of the march and keeop their places in the ranks was greatly enhanced by an opportunity to brew a cup of coffee by the wayside “Captian R.K. Beecham- Gettysburg: The Pivotal Battle of the Civil War”

The American thirst for coffee was slow to develop in a new country whose citizens preferred booze. “Most colonial drinking was utilitarian, with high alcohol consumption a normal part of personal and community habits” observe the author of Drinking in America. Still, coffee was popular enough to cause over a hundred Boston women to raid a food warehouse in 1777.

Throughout the first half of the 1800s the American taste for coffee swelled, particularly after the war of 1812, which temporarily shut off access to tea just when all things French, including coffee drinking, were stylish. By that time Brazilian coffee was easy to get and cheaper in anyway. Perhaps price was counted even more than political ideology when Americans came to choose their favorite caffeinated beverage, coffee.

Once introduced to the black brew, Native Americans adopted it as well. Indeed, the Indians attacked many wagon trains specifically to get coffee- along with sugar,tobacco, and whiskey. On the other hand, white traders took advantage of the Indians, trading one cup of coffee for a buffalo robe. Thus the coffee became a trade item between two races.

American coffeehouses, which continued the British coffeehouse traditions as “penny universities” and enhanced their feared and celebrated status as “seminaries of sedition”. At first they were simply taverns serving ale, port and rum, as well as coffee. But soon these coffeehouses featured in American official civic life in ways that had been unknown even in England. The Green Dragon, a coffeehouse tavern and inn established in 1697, which Daniel Webster called “the headquarters of the Revolution”, was frequented in the next century by other rebels and remained open in Boston’s business center for 135 years. Throughout this time, the Green Dragon, remained a center of activity, hosting from the first, “Red-coated British soldiers, colonial governors, bewigged crown officers, earls and dukes, citizens of high estate, plotting revolutionist of lesser degree, conspirators in the Boston Tea party, patriots and generals of the Revolution.” The Grand Lodge of Masons, under the leadership of the first grand master of Boston’s first Masonic group, convened there as well.

Today in the United States more than 80 percent of adults consume caffeine on a dailt basis. The average daily consumption among all adults is approximately 200 mg per day and among coffee consumers is approximately 280 mg. By appying the standards and definitions about caffeine, this would mean 75 million people fit the criteria for moderate caffeine dependence.

How Coffee Evolved in America

In many ways WWI marked the beginning of the modern world. It introduced the technological advanced weapons and the term shell shock but also accelerated a global outlook and increased international commerce. For coffee men, the war shifted the focus of Latin America to United States as its most reliable customer. While Euroe suffered through the war, U.S. roasters took full advantage of a favorable business situation created by the war.

In the cofused wartime economy, the New York Coffee Exchange closed its doors for four months. In 1914 an editorial in a coffee trade journal called for American coffee men to act. Because the Europe were fighting for their home territories and independence, they were compelled to neglect established trade in South America. Moreover, coffee prices were bound to decline, since United Stattes now represented the only major market for the beans.

The vending machine helped make the institutionalization of that most venerated American tradition, the coffee break. In fact the phrase was the invention of the Pan America Coffee Bureau in 1952. The bureau launched a radio, newspaper, and magazine campaigns with the theme, “Give Yourself a Coffee Break- And Get What Coffee Gives to You.” They used ads and fliers to encourage the spread of the coffee break beyond factories and offices. Hospitals started to use them. After Sunday worship services, people started to met for a coffee break with their pastors. The bureau also launched a “Coffee Stop” campaign on the roads to encourage motorists to pull over regularly for coffee as a safety measure.

Role of Coffee in American Media

Professor Prescott speaks of the influence of coffee as a “beneficent exhilaration” and as tending to increase the power of do muscular work as well as the power of concentration in mental effort… In a sad word, and especially in a country like ours, recently and constitutionally deprived of wine… the functions of coffee in bringing serene delight is an important one “Boston Transcript -18 October 1923”.

While Brazil and other coffee growing countries vied to supply their share of caffeine to the the industrialized countries of the north, the jazzed-up North American entered a golden age of hustle in which business, advertising, and consumption defined a decade. Coffee emerged as a widely accepted drink, the scourge only of the most ardent health faddist, and it fueled the energetic decade of the twenties. Coffee consumption in fact did climb slowly through the 1920s. Even though the idea of coffeehouse was not expanded as rapidly as some anticipated, coffee cafes and lunch counters have supplanted hundreds of saloons. As Americans became more mobile with technological developments on expanding roadwats, they chose coffee as the drink for driving. At that time and still the truck stop means the coffee shop.

Yet the most positive effect was by the first national adversiting campaign which was funded by the brazilian growers but executed by an American advertising firm. The campaign got under way in 1919 with spots in popular weekly magazines. Most of the ads were bland and predictable. “Your Uncle Sam provided his boys with COFFEE.” Coffee was “the drink of intellectuals”. All ended with the slogan, “Coffee- the Essential drink.” The national advertising campaign undoubtedly helped boost coffee’s image and sales.

In the first few years of 1990s, the major roasters continued to battle one another without much to show for it, other than an innovative Taster’s Choice campaign- and was even The commercials featured mini soap operas in which Tony, a soulful bachelor, meets

By the mid-1990s it was clear to industry observers that major coffee roaters companies had lost their way, while small-scale coffees were booming. In 1995 Forbes summarized the fate of the big coffee merchants in a one-word healine: “Oversleeping”. The message the businesss magazine conveyed to Maxwell House, Folgers and Nestle: “Wake up and smell the freshly ground coffee”. Later on another company answered the call: Starbucks

Starbucks Coffee Company

“According to legend, Merlin was born in the future and lived backward in time, moving toward the past. He must have often felt out of step with his contemporaries, filled as he was with unconventional notions of what might be. I’m no sage, but sometimes I think I know how he must have felt. My vision for the future, my aspirations for what kind of company Starbucks should be, are so easily misunderstood “Howard Schultz,1997”

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