Pass the coffee: Civets brew up expensive beans

UPDATE - The original picture posted in this entry was not a civet, see the comments below for some updated information.
New coffee maker: The civet cats of southeast Asia are credited with being able to create the most expensive coffee beans in the world. It is said that tTey eat choice, ripe beans, partially digest them and then eliminate the remains. Workers than collect the beans from th
New coffee maker: The civet cats of southeast Asia are credited with being able to create the most expensive coffee beans in the world. It is said that tTey eat choice, ripe beans, partially digest them and then eliminate the remains. Workers than collect the beans from th

Do you have expensive tastes for coffee? How about buying beans that cost $150 a pound for your morning cup of Joe.

If you’re willing to pay that much for the beans, you might not want to know how they’re processed. The Civets in southeast Asia play an important part of the process.

The small cats eat the coffee beans, partly digest them and then, ahem, eliminate them with all of their other solid wastes. They have exquisite taste and eat only the finest, ripest coffee beans they can find.

Workers collect the partially digested beans, wash away the residual dung and process the remaining coffee beans for sale to the public. Asian coffee shops say that their customers find the uniquely processed coffee to be excellent.

Some skeptics think it’s just an urban legend and a high-profile hoax to crank up prices on those gullible enough to be willing to pay huge money for exotic coffee. But coffee marketers from the East insist it’s a legitmate, and safe, way to get coffee.

What do you think? Would you be willing to drink some civet pre-processed coffee?

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

mdr's picture
mdr says:

I don't know if this is true, but when I read it, I spit my morning coffee all over my computer's screen.

posted on Thu, 03/22/2007 - 8:50am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

As is so often the case, Uncle Cecil has explained it all.

posted on Thu, 03/22/2007 - 8:58am
bryan kennedy's picture

To expand further on Gene's link and to clear up the picture above I thought I would explain a little more.

Asian palm civet: drawing by Gustav Mützel
Asian palm civet: drawing by Gustav Mützel
The drawing to the right is actually what the civet in question looks like. The civet isn't a cat but kinda looks like one with a long snout. There are many types of civets in several parts of the world, but Kopi Luwak is only made from the Asian palm civet depicted here.

Kopi Luwak for sale: Yumm, $10 bucks a cup for poop coffee.Courtesy woodsm.
Kopi Luwak for sale: Yumm, $10 bucks a cup for poop coffee.
Courtesy woodsm.
For those who doubt that this high priced coffee is actually available check out this pic from a coffee shop selling the brew.

posted on Mon, 04/09/2007 - 10:38am
Bonequark's picture
Bonequark says:

Kinda gives new meaning to the term, Civet Engineering?

posted on Fri, 03/23/2007 - 6:49am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

[rim shot]

posted on Fri, 03/23/2007 - 9:51am
Andrew McDowell's picture
Andrew McDowell says:

Engineering is a very good field with many opportunities. The education can be strenous, but job prospects will be good. If possible, try to take engineering classes in high school. These are good classes to take. If you go to a public high school they will be free. Just hope that you get a good teacher. If possible, try to move to Iowa where the high schools are among the best in the United States. Go Linn-Mar!

posted on Fri, 03/23/2007 - 9:23am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

In reference to your buzz page on civet coffee - the photo you supply (or someone supplied) is NOT a civet cat - it is an actual cat species.

posted on Thu, 03/29/2007 - 11:24am
Bill's picture
Bill says:

The animal shown with the text is not a civet cat. It is a Serval, a type of cat found in Africa. Civets are not true cats (although often called "civet cats") - they are related to the mongoose (in the family Viverridae).

posted on Thu, 03/29/2007 - 7:58pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

i love it

posted on Fri, 03/30/2007 - 8:45am
Mary F's picture
Mary F says:

This is funny you would show this now; I've been planning on buying some to try this out. What an experience it will be!!!

posted on Fri, 03/30/2007 - 4:20pm
ranti's picture
ranti says:

I believe this is true because we were tought about it in our elementary school back in Indonesia. Although, at that time, I thought *all* coffee were from luwaks and imagined this big coffee plantation with luwaks scampering all over the place munching the coffee fruit. heheh...

I agree that the picture shown here is not correct. You can always go to and search for "luwak". Sorta looks like racoon to me... :-)

posted on Thu, 04/05/2007 - 8:50am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

In actual fact the cat displayed is a Leopard cat, native to Asia. Prionailurus bengalensis

posted on Mon, 04/09/2007 - 5:58am
Apogiop:'s picture
Apogiop: says:

All i can say is...I love it!! The aroma taste of civet coffee is superv!!! You guys should try it and tell me if I'm right when you tasted it...
Thanks.. I'm in Manila! At least it is few dollars cheaper here compare to $150/cup in US or £50 in Europe.

posted on Sat, 04/12/2008 - 9:42am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

It's $150 for a pound of beans (0.45 kg), not for a cup of coffee.

posted on Tue, 04/15/2008 - 9:04am
civet cat coffee's picture

Kopi luwak tastes unlike heavy roasted coffees, since roasting levels range only from cinnamon color to medium, with little or no caramelization of sugars within the beans as happens with heavy roasting. Moreover, kopi luwaks which have very smooth profiles are most often given a lighter roast. Iced kopi luwak brews may bring out some flavors not found in other coffees.

posted on Mon, 12/06/2010 - 12:41am
TroyCo's picture
TroyCo says:

It is the most expensice coffee in the world but we have a very loyal following of consistent buyers. curious? give us a try with a sample at Kopi Luwak

posted on Fri, 07/12/2013 - 1:40pm

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