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TRUCKLOAD of coffee beans leaving a plantation.

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THE etymology of the word offers clues on the history and trajectory of what is, after water and tea, the most popular drink in the world; the English term coffee was adapted from the Dutch koffie, which in turn evolved from the Turkish kahve, itself based on the Arabic qahwah, which I’m told means “dark in colour”. It is believed the plant originates from Ethiopia and Sudan, while the first known reports of coffee being drunk dates from the 15th century, in Yemen, where it had arrived transported by Somali merchants.


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