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Luwak Coffee – Development and Spread

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Indonesia is a country which full of diversity. It includes diversity of coffee. Many countries, especially in America, Europe, and Japan know about Indonesian original coffee. Meanwhile, original coffee is a premium grade coffee which has a good taste.

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Moreover, in 2012, Indonesia is the third largest country of coffee producer in the world after Brazil and Vietnam. Therefore, coffee plantation spreads all over the larger islands. Such as Sumatra, Bali, Java, Sulawesi, Maluku, and Papua. Indonesia also known as the most producer of original coffee.

The extent of the Indonesia geography leads to the diversity of coffee flavors. Then, original coffee has huge prospects in United States market. It because Indonesian coffee currently in a fifth of the country for exporting coffee to their market. Indonesia has many types of original coffee among other countries. There are several variants of original coffee. Such as Gayo coffee from Aceh, Toraja coffee from south Sulawesi, and Luwak coffee.

Luwak coffee also known as Cat-poop and Civet coffee. Luwak coffee is coffee powder from coffee beans which passed a various processes.  The process of fermentation is in digestive system of Civet. Meanwhile, Luwak coffee is one of the most expensive coffee in the world. Nowadays, the spreads of Luwak coffee powder have reach United States.

Luwak coffee has a different aroma and taste from other types of coffee. The bittersweet with more fragrant aroma is characteristic of Luwak coffee. Then, this original coffee is the most expensive type of coffee beans in the world. Even recorded in Guiness Book of Records. In other countries, there is a cafe that sells Luwak coffee with an amazing price. However, every region of Indonesia has their own types of Luwak coffee.

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History

Luwak coffee created by natural process. The 18th century was the beginning of history. Netherlands opened a commercial plantation in Java and Sumatra islands. The first cultivation of beans was Arabica beans, imported from Yemen. In Cultuurstelsel era, banned farm workers for picked coffee beans for personal consumption.

One day, the planters found animal feces contains granules of coffee beans in plantation areas. Then, it turns out they found Civet who like to consume coffee beans. Meanwhile, There is no prohibition from Netherlands about picks Civet coffee beans. So planters collected civet coffee beans in their fesses and washing them. After that, they roasted, ground, and brewed with hot water.

Planters drank a Civet coffee and feel different sensations of coffee taste. Civet coffee is more enjoyable than regular coffee. Then, the pleasure of Civet coffee wafted by Netherlands. Since then, it became favorite beverage in Netherlands elite. Therefore, Civet coffee became the most expensive coffee in the world since the colonial era.

The Producing of Beans

Civet can only produce approximately 0.2-0.4 kg of beans. That’s why, the original of Civet coffee is very expensive. It because their production is very limited. Civet loves to find a good and ripe fruits for their foods. Meanwhile, coffee fruit has a sweet taste. Civet has a sensitive sense of smell. They only pick an optimal coffee fruits. Therefore, Luwak coffee beans are taken as the best beans for coffee.

Foods Hunting

Civet is active to find foods at night. They climb trees to get foods. Such as mango, banana, melon, papaya, and so on. Then, the preys are mice, lizards, snails, insects, and other small animals. However, Civet selects the good fruits for their food. So when eating coffee fruits, it only takes a truly mature and has a special aroma of coffee fruits.

Civet prefers stay in clean places. Even when they remove fesses, Civet chooses a clean place. For example on dry land, the rocks, and over fallen log.

The flavor of Luwak coffee beans presents a tremendous pleasure with a higher viscocity. It because the beans contains high nutrition which beneficial for body health.

Digestive System

Civet has a simple digestive system. They can not digests hard food like coffee fruits. So, coffee beans fermented in their stomach and released through fesses. The fermentation process of Luwak coffee beans, similar as fermented coffee in warehouse for five to eight years. Therefore, same as wine, coffee beans are considered to be more valuable while keep with special treatment and fermentation.

The fermentation process in Civet stomach produces a great beans. Coffee beans contain a lower caffeine and less bitter.  Moreover, the taste of Luwak coffee is long lasting. It still felt in mouth even though taken an hour ago.

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Types of Civet

There are several civets which recognized as the best coffee beans producer in the world. Such as:


1.Civet Pandan

Musang pandan, scent pandan leaves, Ferret Civet Pandan is the most famous civets than their fellow. These animals has a scent similar to fragrant of Pandan leaves. They mostly find in southern China, northern Himalayas, southern India. As well as the islands in Indian ocean, South China sea, and Philippine sea.

Civet Pandan can live in various habitats. They are naturally living in tropical and subtropical forests. They also find in parks, gardens, plantations, and orchards. On the other hand, they can live in places where their foods available and places for rest. Such as hollow trees and rock crevices

Their hobbies are eating mature sweet fruits, includes ripe cherries. It uses to produces a Luwak coffee. Therefore, they have an important role as the recipient of good beans. As well as help in ecosystems of forest.


2.Civet Bulan

moon palm civet. ferret. animalsCivet Bulan is one of civet which has many benefits for human. They originated from East Asia and Southeast Asia, and many scattered areas of tropical forests.

In Indonesia, their habitats can still be found on the island of Sumatra and Kalimantan. The spreads include Aceh, North Sumatra, West Sumatra, Riau, Bengkulu, Lampung, and Kalimantan. Civet Bulan is an omnivore. They can live by eating vegetables, fruits or small animals such as insects, rodents, ducks and others.


3.Civet Rase

ferret rase, civet, animalsThis type of civet is easily to find in Indonesia. They spread around India, Pakistan, Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia and Sri Lanka. These animals are more active at night. While at noon, will more sleep.

They also has senses of sight and sharp smell and hearing.  These animals is adaptable. Therefore, these animals can be found in many places. Anyone living in the woods, bushes, meadows, near the river, marshes and other habitats.

Rase has fragrant smell while their tails are shorter than Civet Pandan. Then their color of nose also relatively darker than other types. Rase is active between morning and night. Those animals were agile and energetic in night. Meanwhile, Rase sometimes infiltrate into tight and dark spots in a day.

Meanwhile, Civet Rase is one of beautiful Civet among other types. They have furs with brindle-coat color in the tail and body. That’s why, many animal lovers especially civet want to grow them as pets.


4.Civet Lombok

Civet lombok, ferrets, animals, luwak coffeeCivet Lombok is one of the main endemic to Indonesia from Lombok island, West Nusa Tenggara. The existence of civet is reduce as well as decreasing of forest amount. Nowadays, they live around residents. Therefore, people assume that Civet Lombok is pests and often eat their animals and fruits.

There is no difference between Civet Lombok and other types. The only difference is their color is more dominant with black. It from head to tail. Either with pattern like commonly other civet. Civet Lombok generally can be adapted as pet. they are tame and obedient with owners.

Meanwhile, Civet Lombok also has same characteristic as other civet. They are an omnivore which love to eat fruits and nuts. Such as Guava, Banana, Chestnuts, and Papaya.


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Types of Luwak Coffee

There are two types of Luwak coffee based on their raw materials. The most popular types are Luwak Arabica coffee and Luwak Robusta coffee. Each of Luwak coffe has its chemical characteristic and properties. Both of them are different. The chemicals compounds contain in coffee beans affects the flavor and aroma of each brewed coffee. Meanwhile, There are differences between Arabica and Robusta coffee.

Arabica and Robusta coffees are different types of coffee. The differences lies in the general sense, where the two species was grown, and economical differences. Arabica has a more diverse of variant flavor, while Robusta has neutral flavor and often considered like a flour taste. Robusta coffee beans roasts and has a nuts fragrant. Then Arabica coffee beans has a slightly larger shape and oval, while Robusta coffee are smaller and round.

The Fermentation

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When the beans are in the digestive system of civet, the fermentation process naturally. It done by enzymes and bacteria at a rate of 24-26 ° C temperature for approximately 10 hours. Meanwhile, Civet is only  capable of processing the digestive civet coffee fruit flesh of his course into feces. Therefore, while the undigested, coffee beans do not join and remain intact when out with the fesses.

Luwak coffee beans is contain chemical compounds. It affects the flavor and fragrant of brewed coffee. Then, the compounds give the different content of chemical composition which produce two different compounds. There are volatile and non volatile compounds. Therefore, it will affect the flavor of coffee while roasting.

The differences

The Luwak Arabica and Robusta coffee beans contain caffeine which is lower than normal coffee beans. So that the Luwak coffee is very good for coffee lovers who have low tolerance to caffeine. Arabica Luwak coffee beans has a lower caffeine and protein compounds. However, it has a higher lipid compounds than Robusta. Therefore, this is a reasons why Arabica coffee beans is taste better than Robusta.

There are differences between Arabica and Robusta Luwak coffee beans. Such as :

NoLuwak ArabicaLuwak Robusta
1Tend to emit fragrant spices such as herbal and floralTends to emit fragrance like chocolate, woody (wood) or earthy
2The taste of the coffee can be soft, sweet, tangy, and also strongThe taste has a neutral flavor variationst
3Arabica has 1,08% of caffeineRobusta has 2,48% of caffeine
4Arabica has more acidityRobusta has normal acidity
5Arabica coffee fruits grow in cold areaRobusta coffee fruits grown in lowlands (1000-2000 M)
6Fruiting in cold temperaturesFruiting in hot temperature

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Process of Making

The process of handling Luwak coffee beans are divided into two types. according with MUI (Islam organization),  they wash the fesses of civet before use or not wash them. There are several process of making Luwak coffee beans. Such as


1.Process of Harvesting

Harvesting process is done in the morning around 7 PM. They bring out the fesses of the civet and recorded. It uses for see the development of the civet growth. Then the next step are cleaning and feeding process.


2.Process of Cleaning

Washing of fesses is done manually by spray with water then rub by hand.  Do it continuously until the coffee beans looks more better and clean.

Cleaning is done by flipping the coffee beans in order to clean thoroughly.  Repeat the process of cleaning up a few times. Then, it makes sure the beans are really clean. The cleaner coffee beans usually has yellowish color and releases a fragrant scent.

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3.Process of Drying stage I

After the Luwak coffee beans washed, the next part is the first phase of the drying process. It done by initial drying (voodrogen).  The first process is remove residual water which attached in beans. On the other hand, In each of drying process, preferably using sunlight. It because the nature are susceptible of coffee smell.


4.Process of Peeling Skin

There are two ways of stripping of skin horn. It can be done by use machine and manually.  The name of machine is Huler machine which is more beneficial than manually. By using machine, it able to facilitate the faster of stripping. However, There are weakness of using machine. The produce of beans will be white and less attractive.

Whereas, when it done manually, the color of beans remain green. Then, the green coffee bean was produced. Usually, the international market prefers to buy green coffee. It can be stored until eight years.


5.Process of Drying Stage II

The second phase of the drying process is done to get a green Luwak coffee beans. Green coffee bean generally has a shelf life of approximately eight years. The longer of the storage time will decrease the levels of caffeine. It also contain more delicious flavor.

Drying is one method to preserve the beans. It uses for make the beans have a longer shelf life. The other benefit using this method is to reduce the weight and volume of coffee beans. Therefore, drying the coffee beans can save the storage space itself.

In the process of drying coffee beans, the level of equilibrium will determine the final boundaries. Sometimes, the temperature of beans effect the balance of water. If the number of evaporated molecules of water is equal to coffee beans, then the level of dryness also balanced. Therefore, the evaporation of water will be stopped immediately.

The drying of coffee beans affected by differences in water temperature. The faster of transfer heat process will make evaporation coffee beans stop. Therefore, the coffee cherries are picked to be dried as soon as possible. Even before be saturated by water that can slow down the drying process.


6.Process of Sorting

The process is separate between coffee beans and its dirt of gravel. Purpose of separation is aim to get a quality grade of beans. Coffee beans also evaluated by its color. Usually, the coffee beans will be assessed on a scale between 10 to 20. The beans measured by passing different sizes.

Furthermore, defective beans are discarded. As well as coffee beans with unsatisfactory color and shape, the longer fermented beans, and damaged by insects.


7.Process of Roasting

As other regular coffee, the process of roasting is divided into various types. Generally, the degree of roasting depends on consumers favor in each country. It ranges from light, medium, and dark. For light to medium roast is usually for consumption of Asia such as Japan and Korea. Light roast will cause acid flavor while getting to dark toward the more bitter. Meanwhile, the dark roast generally preferred by mainland Europe and America.

The process of roasting take longer time. It because we must adjust temperature of roast. When beans are roasted in low temperatures, the oil and compounds will perfectly blend. After roasting level reached, remove the beans from machine, cool it on top of container.


Luwak Coffee Beans Plantation

Plantation of coffee beans spread around territory of Indonesia. There are various region which are the best producer of coffee beans. It because their plantation of coffee beans are highly produce a premium quality of coffee beans, especially Luwak coffee beans.

There are some plantation with great produce of coffee beans. such as:


1.Gayo coffee plantation (Aceh)

Gayo is mountainous area at an altitude of 1,200 meters above sea level. Many people call Gayo as ‘Flake of Paradise” in this world. Some people who have been to Gayo highlands amazed with their beautiful landscape of coffee beans plant. Most of them spread around highlands. the main attraction is coffee. therefore, foreign assume this highlands as “Switzerland van Gayo”. Then the delicious of fresh coffee like Luwak coffee can be served any time directly from the ground of Gayo plantation.


2.Templung Village (East Java)

Templung village located in Banyuwangi, east Java. This village popular as the coffee-producing areas. Coffee beans plantation spreads around village. Banyuwangi also has their character flavor. It strong and already well-known in foreign countries.

Homes in Templung village filled with coffee plantation. Then, the beans stretcher beneath the sun. The coffee pickers will selecting the beans that have been reach color of red. In one season, the coffee plantation can produce six to seven tons of dried coffee beans. Meanwhile, for the wild Civet coffee, they achieve more than quintals. Therefore, their coffee beans processed into various type of coffee such as Civet coffee, Lanang coffee, and Temulung coffee.


3.Bali Pulina Plantation (Bali)

Bali is currently one of the major manufacture for Indonesian Civet coffee. Bali Pulina located in Ubud, Bali. It presents different sensation in a cup of Luwak coffee. There are captivity of civet. So that coffee produces directly from civets.

In Bali Pulina, the process of making Luwak coffee still uses the the traditional way. It because easily to maintain its flavor. Then, plantation of Arabica coffee beans commonly grown in the highlands. its altitude reach 700 meters above sea level.

The growing of coffee, they only pick a great quality of coffee beans from civets. Civet in Bali Pulina actually not always grounded. Sometimes, they will release them at coffee plantation around Bali Pulina. Then, the coffee served after grinding for a week.


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Benefits

There are some benefits of drinking Luwak coffee. Such as:


Protect teeth from cavities.

Prevent the occurrence of oral cancer.

Drink four glasses can prevent the occurrence of breast cancer.

Protect the skin against skin cancer.

Caffeine in Luwak coffee able to inhibit inflammation in the brain.

Prevent gallstones and diabetes

Immune booster.

Prevent cell damaged.


Prevent wrinkles on the skin.

Make skin smooth and tight.

Eliminate cellulite.

Minimize pimples.

Source of skin nutrients.

Refreshing facial skin.

Healing skin from irritation

Keep the skin moist


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Spreads Around the World

Luwak coffee worth to get the first position of the most delicious coffee in the world. There are many coffee shop which sell Luwak coffee in other countries. In the United States, there is a coffee shop that sells the civet coffee. On the other hand, there are three major export markets civet coffee products from Indonesia. There are Japan, South Korea, and Saudi Arabia. Luwak coffee is also increasingly attract coffee lovers in Australia.

Meanwhile, Russia which has a coffee culture also adds civet coffee in the list of favorite coffee. Rusia get coffee beans from Brazil, Cuba, Colombia, and Indonesia. However, there are some countries are try to produce their Luwak coffee. Two coffee farms in Peru, imitate the technique from Indonesian coffee farmers. They do utilize the digestive civets to remove the bitter taste of coffee from coffee beans. Moreover, Malaysia has also started the process of civet coffee production. But still on a small scale.

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Claim of Luwak Coffee

Luwak coffee still can not be patented as original product from Indonesia. It because the absence of decision from FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations). If there is no decision from them, the patent of the process face difficult situation. The planters and workers are still fighting for Luwak coffee as a superior product. However, the issue of animal abuse launched become an obstacle to the patenting of these commodities.

The issue launched to hinder the process of patenting civet coffee as a genuine product Indonesia. Therefore, There must be a real encouragement from the government in order to put faith in FAO. They make sure that Luwak coffee production process does not torture animals as rumored over the years.

The pleasure of fascinating taste is one of main attraction of Luwak coffee. The process of making and their plantation also give an interesting education. Especially for coffee lovers. Then, the unforgettable flavor of Luwak coffee beans make sure that it worthy as the first coffee with fabulous taste in the world.

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