Eeveryone recognizes a roasted coffee bean, right? But you might not recognize an actual coffee plant. (Of course, from a personal experience, my two-year-old can’t recognize a coffee bean)

Coffee trees are pruned short to conserve their energy and aid in harvesting, but can grow to more than 30 feet (9 meters) high. Each tree is covered with green, waxy leaves growing opposite each other in pairs. Coffee cherries grow along the branches. Because it grows in a continuous cycle, it’s not unusual to see flowers, green fruit and ripe fruit simultaneously on a single tree.

It takes nearly a year for a cherry to mature after first flowering, and about 5 years of growth to reach full fruit production. While coffee plants can live up to 100 years, they are generally the most productive between the ages of 7 and 20. Proper care can maintain and even increase their output over the years, depending on the variety. The average coffee tree produces 10 pounds of coffee cherry per year, or 2 pounds of green beans.

All commercially grown coffee is from a region of the world called the coffee belt. The trees grow best in rich soil, with mild temperatures, frequent rain and shaded sun.

Independent scientific evidence shows coffee, with or without caffeine, is associated with many unique health benefits, including increased longevity and decreased risk of multiple cancers and chronic diseases.

Like regular coffee, JADA coffee begins as green, unroasted beans. The hard beans are warmed and soaked in liquid to dissolve and remove the caffeine in one of four ways: using water alone, using a mixture of water and solvents (most commonly methylene chloride or ethyl acetate) applied either directly or indirectly, or using water and “supercritical carbon dioxide.” Yes, I know a lot of “scientific” words.

As you think about caffeine intake, be mindful that caffeine is found not just in coffee but also in other foods and beverages, so consider all potential sources. Everybody is different, so everyone should check health recommendations from recognized authorities, listen to how your body responds to caffeine, and consult your personal physician if you have any questions.

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