Before we try and answer this question, I would like to invite you to recent and updated blog posts of mine concerning benefits of coffee drinking and the dark secrets of Fair Trade – you won’t be disappointed.
Regarding the promised answer – you’re probably not.
The New Yorker has recently interviewed a fifth generation coffee farmer living in the steep hillsides of the Santa Ana Volcano in western El-Salvador. Authentic as this might seem, Aida Battle lived most of her life as a refugee in Miami, Florida where she studied the western pursuit for the perfect mug of coffee.
With this deep understanding and a small feeling for business, Battle produced coffee for a specific slice of the population – the elite. Whiling treating every single coffee bean with individual care, sorting only the best cherries of the beans, Battle’s coffee is sold today for no less than $60 a kilo.
Battle is one of many open-minded, revolutionaries’ specialists in her field, exploring the deep tastes of the coffee bean. A coffee-blogger of The Wall Street Journal reported recently of a coffee mug sold for $1,200 per kilo, with only 50 kilo-gram available in the whole market – produced by elephants! Elephant’s diet consists mostly from grass and fruit. Combining coffee beans in the diet creates beans, which are extracted from the dung, flavored by hints of chocolate and spices like nutmeg, paired with an earthy feeling.
On the one hand, devotees for gourmet tastes are satisfied by finding new exotic flavors matching their special sense of taste. However, animal protection groups are protesting against these new productions. SuperVegan claims ‘Kopi Luwak‘, a coffee produced through the Civet’s (a cat-like animal living in south-east Asia) digesting system, was sold last year in the UK for $115 a cup, is treating animals inhumanly. Although Kopi Luwak stared during 2007 in the movie ‘The Bucket List’, exposing the viewers the exotic production method, the Civets are locked in small cages, separated from their offsprings and forced to eat a huge amount of coffee beans.
Will different coffee tastes continue to surprise us in the future? Will animal protectors’ organizations change the new methods? Or perhaps a different method of production will be found? Until then we, the majority of the people, will have to stick the good old neighborhood coffee.