roasted coffee beansScientists who have examined the genome of almost all of the cultivated diversity of coffee beans have announced they have realised how the beans came to singly yield caffeine.

Although caffeine is existent in coffee, chocolate and tea, researchers suggest that this discovery that neither coffee beans or tea received caffeine from a precursory common ancestor plant.

The caffeine is known for its remarkable effect on the chemistry of the human brain, which results in a desire to consume coffee, chocolate and tea. Scientists have researched the genome of robusta coffee, which accounts for around a third of the 2.5 billion cups of coffee drunk daily all around the world.

Although caffeine in coffee certainly makes it desirable to most, or better yet to others, makes coffee indispensable — how the plant itself came to evolve and learn the ability to create caffeine is a puzzle.

It could have to do with fending off leaf-eating insects, or to attract beneficial pollinators like bees and birds by making them addicted to caffeine addicts, or to make the soil around a coffee plant less attractive to plant competition. Possibly it’s a combination of all three suggestions, or even something yet recognised.

Caffeine is obviously a vital part of the coffee experience. The robusta coffee discovery could bring new breeding practices for a crop that is of top revenue — producing exports for a variety of countries around the globe.

Hence, this discovery should be welcomed and further examined to continue to grow new varieties of coffee, in order to continue to expand the coffee industry in all countries across the globe.

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