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The Importance of Tea and Coffee in the Emergence of a Globalized World - Essay Example

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The importance of tea and coffee in the emergence of a globalized world Every morning, as we wake up, the first thing we do is get ourselves that steaming hot cup of tea or coffee. People go up to even say that they cannot even function without their morning cuppa…
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The Importance of Tea and Coffee in the Emergence of a Globalized World
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Download file to see previous pages We haven't had any tea for a week... The bottom is out of the Universe.”1 It is quite evident what Kipling feels due to that lack of tea. The bottom is out of the universe, meaning he can’t find any balance in the universe. Nothing to make him steady on his feet. This is the importance of tea. Coffee drinkers feel the same as well, although there exists quite a rivalry among the two groups. The bottom line is the same. People cannot survive without their tea or coffee. From necessity, these drinks have now taken a more important place in our lives. At work, we get tea breaks that help us refresh ourselves, when we want to socialize, we usually “catch up for coffee” and so on.2 Coffee and tea have taken such an important role in our lives today that businessmen could only think of profiting out of this. Look at the success of coffee chains like Starbucks, Costa, Barista and so on and one can understand just exactly how important this drink is to us. Let us visit how these drinks came to be a part of the global economy. History of Tea Tea was said to be discovered in China almost 5,000 years ago. Legend says that in 2732 B.C., Emperor Shen Nung was exposed to tea when wild leaves leaves from a tree blew into his pot of boiling water. He was intrigued by the pleasant aroma of the brew and curiously drank some.3 It is said that the Emperor felt a warm feeling pass through his body as he drank the brew and said that he felt “as if the liquid was investigating every part of his body.” 4 The Emperor Shen Nung decided to name the brew "ch'a", the Chinese character meaning “to check or investigate”. In 200 B.C., a Han Dynasty Emperor decided that tea would be referred to by writing a special character that illustrated wooden branches, grass, and a man between the two. This written character was also pronounced "ch'a". It symbolized the balance that tea brought in human life.5 The 4th to 8th century saw a great growth spurt for tea. It was now used for more than medicinal purposes and began to be enjoyed even recreationally for pleasure and refreshment. There were more and more tea plantations across the country and all that dealt in the crop ended up rich! Upto the mid-17th century though, all tea was green. When this tea was fermented, people realized that the resultant black tea could hold the aroma longer and was stronger than the mild green teas. This also meant that they could export these teas as they would not lose their aromas and flavor on the journey. Thus, with the advent of foreign trade, black tea was discovered and was a huge success. Role of Tea in Globalization From the start, tea spread from China to different countries such as Tibet, Japan, Russia and Europe. In all these countries, tea has its own space in medicine, culture and status. In Tibet, tea was used as a currency. In Japan, a special Tea Ceremony was created. It is now a very integral part of Japanese lifestyle. Tea is served with every meal and served while greeting guests. In Russia, the Trans-Siberian Railway was constructed to help transport tea. In Europe, tea is treated as a status symbol. Tea based traditions such as “Afternoon Tea” and “High Tea” were also said to be created in Europe. While one is more of a light refreshment, the second is an entire meal. Until 1678, tea trade was dominated by the Dutch. But post that, the British began to import tea on a commercial basis and that created a completely new ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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