Costa Coffee became half a century old on the 50th day of the year

On the 19th of February 1971 – to the delight of every coffee enthusiast – Costa Coffee embarked on its world-conquering journey. Did you know that the webcam was invented thanks to coffee? That in the beginning, London cabs delivered Costa Coffee to key customers? And that a shot of espresso is made from 55-65 coffee beans? Or that Beethoven always counted beans before making a coffee? Here are 50 coffee facts for Costa’s 50th birthday.

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Fun facts about Costa Coffee

1.     The Costa brothers founded the Costa Coffee brand fifty years ago, on the 19th of February 1971.

2.   The Costa brothers created 111 blends before the 112th variation became the iconic Signature Blend.

3.    Only 5 out of 100 coffee beans meet Costa Coffee’s quality requirements.

4.    During Costa's slow roasting process, the coffee beans are roasted at a low temperature for 20-30 minutes (depending on the variety) instead of the traditional 8-12-15 minutes. This means that Costa uses the sous vide method for coffee-making.

5.    The Costa brothers “invented” the mobile coffee shop, by selling their drinks using a coffee machine built into a car.

6.    The Costa brothers initially delivered coffee in style by London cabs to their partners, the luxury hotels.

7.     Costa has been using aroma-sealing soft packaging since 2007, when the brand's At-Home and At-Work coffees were launched, instead of the vacuum packaging which does not provide enough care for the product.

8.    The carefully selected coffee beans are roasted at Costa’s zero-energy plant in Basildon, near London. The process is personally supervised by Gennaro Pelliccia, Costa’s Master of Coffee.

9.    Costa’s coffee beans are Rainforest Alliance (RFA) Certified. Costa Coffee has been working with the RFA since 2008 – they were the first coffee brand and franchise in the UK to source 100% of their coffee from RFA-certified farms.

10.   Sergio and Bruno Costa used the family’s original Italian roaster, an old family relic traditionally used to roast coffee. Costa Coffee still makes coffee in a way that is similar to the Costa brothers’ technique.

11.   Gennaro Pelliccia, the Master of Coffee, and his team taste every batch of roasted beans before they are packaged to ensure the quality is perfect. That means 5000 tastings a year.

12.   Costa Coffee was acquired for $ 4.9 billion by The Coca-Cola Company in January 2019.

13.   The At-Home, At-Work and HoReCa Costa Coffee selection has been available since last May in Hungary.

14.   The Costa Smart Café Solution (formerly known as Costa Express) coffee vending machine uses perfect quality coffee beans and fresh milk to make coffee. In the machine’s ad, Gennaro Pelliccia, Master of Coffee, makes coffee inside the coffee machine like the hidden man plays chess in the chess machine invented by Farkas Kempelen.

15.   To this date, the Costa Foundation has supported the education of more than 85,000 children in 10 underdeveloped coffee-producing countries around the world.

16.   Costa recycles nearly 4,000 tonnes of coffee a year, which is converted into biofuels to heat British households.

17.   The coffee master Gennaro Pelliccia’s tongue had previously been insured for 10 million pounds.

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Coffee – sheer data

18.   In 1933, Bialetti's invention was born: the moka pot.

19.   Even today, there are approx. 1.3 moka pot per household in Italy.

20.   One cup of black coffee has 1 calorie in it.

21.   65 percent of coffee consumption is related to breakfast or morning hours.

22.   International Coffee Day started in Japan back in 1983, but coffee got its own holiday only 11 years ago: we have been celebrating coffee and coffee culture on September 29 since 2009.

23.   One shot of espresso is made from 8 g of coffee.

24.   One shot, that is a cup of espresso is made from 55 to 65 coffee beans.

25.   From one kilogram of coffee, you can make 80 to 140 espresso shots.

26.   One kilogram of coffee contains 4400 to 9100 coffee beans, largely depending on the size of the coffee beans.

27.   On an annual level, the commercial value of coffee is nearly $ 31 billion. Coffee is also traded on the stock market.

28.   Experts estimated that the world coffee consumption could have exceeded 9.6 billion tonnes in 2020.

29.   Coffee is usually measured not in tonnes but in bags - one bag is 60 kg.

30.   International Coffee Organization forecasts that the total coffee production will increase by 1.9% in the (coffee) year of 2020/21 and will reach 171.9 million bags. The volume of Arabica is expected to increase by 5.2% and to 101.88 million bags.

31.   The growth in the global coffee demand is estimated to triple production by 2050.

32.   Coffee is the world's second most widely traded commodity: only oil surpasses it.

33.   Coffee is our second favorite drink after water.

34.   According to the International Coffee Organization, Europe imports more coffee than the United States.

35.   The world consumes 500 billion cups of coffee every year. That is 1.37 billion cups a day, which is 57 million cups per hour, 956,000 cups per minute, and 16,000 cups per second.

36.   A coffee plant lives for about 70 years and brings 2.5 kg of berries a year, from which 500 g of green coffee beans can be obtained. Important to note that the fruit of the coffee plant is a cherry-like berry with two coffee beans in it.

37.   The caffeine content of the coffee is not the same as the strength of the coffee. Caffeine content depends mainly on the proportion of Arabica and Robusta coffee beans in each package. Robusta can contain up to twice as much caffeine as Arabica, and the strength, indicated by a number on the packaging, shows the intensity and complexity of the taste.

Partial view of a tray of freshly roasted coffee beans. Partial view of a tray of freshly roasted coffee beans.

Coffee fun facts from around the world

38.   Add whipped cream or milk foam to keep your coffee warm: coffee stays warm for 20% longer if you add them.

39.   Italian “espresso”: the word espresso originated in Italy and it means “quickly, under pressure”. Espresso is made by pressing very hot water under high pressure onto finely ground, compacted coffee in a short span of time.

40.   Espresso is one of the few words in the world that has never been translated into any language.

41.   Those who drink coffee live longer: a Harvard study found a connection between moderate consumption (three to four cups a day) and longer life expectancy. Their studies also showed a reduction in the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, and Parkinson's disease.

42.   Coffee loses caffeine during roasting, so the dark and full-bodied coffee rich in aroma actually contains less caffeine than a lightly roasted version.

43.   35% of women and 15% of men are ‘super tasters’, which means that they can accurately identify flavors that they have already tasted from their memories.

44.   The taste of the food or drink (including coffee) that we have consumed disappears from our mouth usually within 21 minutes.

45.   The webcam was invented because of coffee. Scientists at the University of Cambridge drank a lot of coffee, so in order for the coffee pot to never run out, they invented a webcam to keep their eyes on the coffee level.

46.   When coffee became the most popular breakfast drink in the world, it was surprisingly not the sparsely available tea that coffee pushed aside from the throne in Europe, but beer, which until then had been the most popular breakfast drink. Unlike the beer we know today, it had a low alcohol content but reliably killed all germs and bacteria.

47.   The world's first vending machine was made by Hérón, and mostly served the purpose of preventing attempts to steal holy water. Hérón’s invention required a coin to be inserted from above, which fell on one side of a pan attached to a lever. This raised the other side of the pan, making way for the holy water to flow out from the bottom until the coin fell off.

48.   Brazil could not afford to send its athletes to the 1932 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. The government decided to set up a delegation of 82 on a coffee barge and the athletes could only land if they managed to sell the coffee load.

49.   Beethoven was so passionate about coffee that he counted 60 beans per cup before making his drink.

50.   Latte art is a process in which a creamy, soft, silky milk foam is poured into an espresso and as a result, a pattern appears on the surface. The two most common patterns of latte art are the heart and rosette shape, the latter also known as ferns because of the similarity. Making patterns such as tulips, wavy hearts, swans, or scorpions requires more expertise.

Old farmer harvesting coffee seeds and placing them in the bucket. 

A farmer showing us the fresh coffee seeds , this are coffee fruits just been cut from the trees, after harvesting the fruits the farmers must dry the fruit in order to roast it so it can become a roasted gran of coffee and become a product for a perfectly fresh coffee Old farmer harvesting coffee seeds and placing them in the bucket. 

A farmer showing us the fresh coffee seeds , this are coffee fruits just been cut from the trees, after harvesting the fruits the farmers must dry the fruit in order to roast it so it can become a roasted gran of coffee and become a product for a perfectly fresh coffee