Thursday, 15 November 2007

Coffee beans? Found in poo.

I was watching "Bizarre Foods" on Discovery Channel this morning. This time food expert and host, Andrew Zimmern, was down in Vietnam trying out Vietnamese coffee. What can be so bizarre about drinking coffee? Well, the farmers of these special coffee do not harvest the beans off the tree.

I saw one looking around the plantation floor and picked up something that looks like poo to me. Yes, there is nothing wrong with my eye sight; he is looking for droppings from civet, which is a kind of weasel. Look at it more closely and you can see coffee beans stuck all over.

These coffee beans have a unique flavor as they have been partially fermented by the digestive enzymes of the civets. Once the dung are washed off, the beans roasted, you have your Civet coffee ready to be grounded for brewing.

I did a research and discovered that most of the world's supply of Civet coffee is sold in Japan. People in USA are drinking it too. Then, there is Kopi Luwak from Indonesia, which is reported by Forbes to be the most expensive coffee in the world.

Infact, Kopi Luwak managed to provide better living condition for the poor farmers in Indonesia. 40% of the online sales are shared with the farmers, enabling them to buy portable generators for electricity for their homes and improve their lifestyle.

So, who said you cannot make life better with poo?

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