Coffee is grown in Africa, Asia and Latin America, in a so-called ‘coffee belt’ that encompasses the tropics. Brazil is the biggest producer, followed by Vietnam and Colombia.
Some countries specialise in one type of coffee bean. Robusta coffee is grown from sea level to about 800 meters, mainly in Vietnam, Brazil and Indonesia.
Arabica coffee grows at a higher altitude, usually above 800 meters and up to 2.500 meters. Brazil, Colombia, Ethiopia, Central America, Mexico, India and Eastern Africa are among the best-known Arabica producing regions.
Coffees have typical regional tastes which are influenced by soil and weather conditions. Costa Rica produces a mild coffee with nutty flavor while Indonesian coffee has a thick, mellow character. Ethiopian coffee is prized for its smooth strong flavor.