History of the Coffee
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lHomer in his Odyssey refers to the utility of an African plant, true medicine against sadness. This plant was not other plant than coffee. 
Similar to the gold or diamond mines, the discovery of coffee originated a lot of legends. One of them took place around 1440.

A shepherd from Abyssinia, intrigued with the fact that his goats gained an extraordinary vivacity when they ate fruits and leaves of a specific shrub; he decided to try them too. He roasted and smashed the little fruits and tasted them. Soon he felt the beneficial and healthy effects produced by coffee.

Maybe more than fifty years passed and the shepherd discovery reached the ears of a sheik from Yemen. He had a serious problem: he couldn’t wake up at the time of his prayers to Ala and the prophet Maome (which is a grave fault for the good Muslim). After tasting the product, he felt himself very well and full of energy. So coffee started to be known by everyone in the Muslim countries.

The Egyptians had the Idea to open public places where someone could stay peacefully seated under a nice shade and taste the beverage that many of them called liquid gold.

Some time later, occidental wise and naturalist men agreed to call the plant as Arabic Coffea.
Europe knew coffee at the end of XVI century. A rich Venetian merchant introduced it in Italy.

From that time on and throughout the century coffee is disclosed in the entire Europe and reaches the North America. However, in Paris public places are opened where the product can be tasted. One of the most famous at that time is the Café Procope, a luxurious place where artists, authors, poets, politicians and military people are frequently seen.  

In Germany, the Great Johann Sebastian Bach became one of the most feverous followers of coffee. Understanding the importance of the product, the Dutch people started to plant the Rubiaceae in their colonies where the soil is appropriate for its cultivation. Soon the French people imitate them at the beginning of eighteentieth century.

Entry and expansion of coffee in Brazil

Around 1715, the first seedlings were planted in South America, initially in Dutch Guyana (Suriname) and them at the French one; In 1727 it started a situation between France and Portugal about the borders of the French Guyana and Brazil – the governor of Guyana, Claudio dÓrvillers, accused the Portuguese people of having taken off the boundary that marked its border, located in the Montanha Prata, already French territory and threatened to take some retaliation actions.

General governor of Maranhão, João da Maia da Gama, sent for the litigious zone an expedition commanded by Francisco de Melo Palheta, great sergeant of the Portuguese army. From the Palheta went to Cayenne to be in touch with d´Orvilliers recovering with five seedlings and more than a thousand of coffee seeds during a visit to the farming.

There is the version that Mrs. D´Orvillers had offered the seeds to the sergeant. However, it is proven that Palheta had instructions from the general governor of Maranhão in order to bring the seeds.

The seedlings and seeds brought from Cayenne were planted in the areas of Maranhão and Pará. However, this initial development of coffee did not have continuity mainly due to the local weather conditions. Later, the coffee farmings started to be formed in other regions. In the middle of the twenty third century, Furna Uchoa from Pernambuco, great captain in Sobral planted in Ceará some coffee seedlings that he had brought from Plant Garden in Paris, originating the coffee plantation that would be developed by the hillsides of the mountains of Baturité, Aratanha and Pacatuba, which was a production relatively considerable for that period.

Around 1760, João Alberto Castelo Branco, chancellor of the Relationship in Rio de Janeiro, received some seedlings from Maranhão and did its plantation in a vegetable garden of the Capuchins. In Rio, thanks to the existence of labor and easiness of transportation, due to the proximity of the port, its growing was very favored.

From Rio de Janeiro the growing expanded to São Paulo, Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo (first half of the nineteenth century). Later, it reached the west parts of São Paulo and Paraná.

Purple soil and climate were factors that favored the acclimatization of coffee in the southeast and south regions. Coffee growing that developed in São Paulo and Paraná in the twentieth century was responsible for the growth of several cities as Araraquara, Bauru, Catanduva, Olimpia, Ribeirao Preto, São Carlos among others in the state of São Paulo. In the north of Paraná, the cities of Londrina and Maringá were developed.

In parallel to the coffee growing some railroads appeared as Sorocabana, Paulista, Noroeste, Araraquarense and Mogiana along the Espigões Serranos (today this railroad mesh constitutes the Fepasa evidently)

Coffee, in short, generated a lot of capital employed in the industry that today places São Paulo as the biggest industrial estate in Latin America.