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Coffee varieties

There are two basic species of flowering plant that produce the most famous varieties of coffee: Arabica and Robusta.

Coffea arabica
Is a species of Coffea originally indigenous to the mountains of Yemen in the Arabian Peninsula, hence its name, and also from the southwestern highlands of Ethiopia and southeastern Sudan. It is also known as the "coffee shrub of Arabia", "mountain coffee" or "arabica coffee". Coffea arabica is believed to be the first species of coffee to be cultivated, being grown in southwest Arabia for well over 1,000 years.
It is said to produce better coffee than the other major commercially grown coffee species, Coffea canephora (robusta), but tastes vary. C. arabica contains less caffeine than any other commercially cultivated species of coffee.

Robusta coffee
Is a variety of coffee which has its origins in central and western sub-Saharan Africa. It is a species of flowering plant in the Rubiaceae family. Though widely known as Coffea robusta, the plant is scientifically identified as Coffea canephora, which has two main varieties - Robusta and Nganda. It is mostly grown in Vietnam, where French colonists introduced it in the late 19th century, and also in Africa and Brazil, where it is often called conillon. Approximately 20% of the coffee produced in the world is robusta.
Robusta is easier to care for and has a greater crop yield than the other major species of coffee, Coffea arabica, and, because of this, is cheaper to produce. Since arabica beans are often considered superior, robusta is usually limited to use as a filler in lower-grade coffee blends. It is also often included in instant coffee, and in espresso blends to promote the formation of "crema". Robusta has about twice as much caffeine as arabica.

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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