Regions

Africa and Arabia

By most accounts, coffee originated in Africa. Legend has it that coffee was discovered around 800 AD when an Ethiopian goatherd, Kaldi, noticed his herd dancing from one coffee plant to the next, eating the red, coffee cherries. Kaldi tried a few himself and was soon dancing with his goats under its wonderful influence. In Arabia from about 1000 to 1600 AD, the coffee traditions we now share began to take shape. Arabia took great efforts to protect and control the production of coffee. No viable seeds were allowed, and all were made infertile before being exported. It was not until the 17th century that coffee seeds were successfully transported out of the Arabian peninsula. Here again, legend has it that Baba Budan, an Indian, left Mecca with fertile seeds strapped to his belly. This would mark the beginning of coffee’s proliferation throughout the world to the growing regions we know today.
There are numerous growing countries in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula; however, some of the finest coffees come from Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Yemen.

Ethiopia - Coffee Growing Region

Ethiopia

Harvest Time = October thru December
Export Production = 3,324,032 60kg bags (2010)

Kenya - Coffee Growing Region

Kenya

Harvest Time = October thru December (primary)
Export Production = 536,683 60kg bags (2010)

Tanzania - Coffee Growing Region

Tanzania

Harvest Time = October thru February
Export Production = 414,508 60kg bags (2010)

Yemen - Coffee Growing Region

Yemen

Harvest Time = October thru December
Export Production = 18,158 60kg bags (2010)


Asia and the Pacific

Baba Budan is widely believed to have smuggled the first fertile coffee seeds out of Arabia and into India during his pilgrimage to Mecca in around 1600. However the real growth of coffee in trade outside of Arabia started with the Dutch. In 1699, the Dutch successfully planted the first coffee plants outside of the Arabian Peninsula on the island of Java, once a colony and now a part of Indonesia. The first harvest was sent to Amsterdam in 1706 along with a seedling. It is this very seedling that would become the progenitor of the coffee plant that makes its way to Martinique with Gabriel Mathieu de Clieu via the botanical garden in Paris. A plant that would become the foundation for the majority of coffee in Central and South America.
The Dutch originated or greatly influenced coffee cultivation and trade in Indonesia and Asia. Their initial planting in Java was so successful it was second only to Mocha in Yemen. These two coffees were brought together to create the first recorded coffee blend – Mocha Java. Indeed, a common nickname for coffee today is “java,” and the Dutch hand can be felt throughout the region.

India - Coffee Growing Region

India

Harvest Time = October thru December
Export Production = 828,726 60kg bags (2010)

Indonesia - Coffee Growing Region

Indonesia

Harvest Time = October thru March (Sumatra)
Export Production = 797,327 60kg bags (2010)

Papua New Guinea - Coffee Growing Region

Papua New Guinea

Harvest Time = May thru August
Export Production = 921,391 60kg bags (2010)

Timor - Coffee Growing Region

Timor

Harvest Time = May thru September
Export Production = 41,106 60kg bags (2010)


The Americas

In an unusual chain of events that began with the Mayor of Amsterdam gifting a young coffee plant to King Louis XIV of France in 1714, coffee was introduced to the Americas. This gifted tree was planted in the Royal Botanical Garden in Paris. In 1723 a French naval officer, Gabriel Mathieu de Clieu obtained a seedling and set off for Martinique. Sharing his water rations with the coffee plant and protecting it from fellow shipmates, a storm and pirate attack, de Clieu successfully transported and planted his coffee tree in Martinique. By 1726 the tree had grown and multiplied, and the first harvest was ready. By 1777, fifty years later, there were a reported 18 million coffee trees growing on the island and that sole plant became the progenitor of virtually all the coffee plants in Central and South America today. Gabriel Mathieu de Clieu is a coffee hero if there ever was one.

Brazil - Coffee Growing Region

Brazil

Harvest Time = April thru September
Export Production = 28,572,626 60kg bags (2010)

Colombia - Coffee Growing Region

Colombia

Harvest Time = October thru March
Export Production = 7,161,324 60kg bags (2010)

Costa Rica - Coffee Growing Region

Costa Rica

Harvest Time = September thru February
Export Production = 1,193,035 60kg bags (2010)

El Salvador - Coffee Growing Region

El Salvador

Harvest Time = November thru March
Export Production = 1,078,261 60kg bags (2010)
 

Guatemala - Coffee Growing Region

Guatemala

Harvest Time = August thru March
Export Production = 3,437,279 60kg bags (2010)

Hawaii - Kona - Coffee Growing Region

Hawaii – Kona

Harvest Time = September thru November

Honduras - Coffee Growing Region

Honduras

Harvest Time = October thru March
Export Production = 3,349,398 60kg bags (2010)

Jamaica - Coffee Growing Region

Jamaica

Harvest Time = August thru September
Export Production = 12,758 60kg bags (2010)

Mexico - Coffee Growing Region

Mexico

Harvest Time = October thru March
Export Production = 1,749,325 60kg bags (2010)

Nicaragua - Coffee Growing Region

Nicaragua

Harvest Time = November thru February
Export Production = 1,657,598 60kg bags (2010)

Panama - Coffee Growing Region

Panama

Harvest Time = October thru December
Export Production = 63,889 60kg bags (2010)

Peru - Coffee Growing Region

Peru

Harvest Time = April thru October
Export Production = 3,816,671 60kg bags (2010)