How do you take your coffee? A latte with two sugars, or perhaps a short black with one? Well, what about if you could order your next cuppa with a side of elephant poo?
If you happen to travel to Thailand, then you might just find it on the menu.
But with a price tag of more than $1,000 per kilo, it’s not a cheap cup of coffee by any means.
The elephant dung coffee is made using coffee beans that have been digested by Thai elephants. According to research, the digestion process causes the coffee bean protein to break down, which leads to the removal of most of the bitterness taste.
The process begins with Thai Arabica beans that are grown and harvested at 1,500m above sea level. The elephants eat and then expel the beans which are then collected, cleaned and roasted, with more than 10,000 beans needed to make just one kilogram of roasted coffee.
This isn’t the strangest coffee available, though, there are several other coffee cultivation and brewing methods that might just put you off having a caramel latte for good.
In Bali there is a type of coffee that is made from beans digested by the civet cat in Bali called Kopi Luwak, which retails for $700 per kilo.
Also in Indonesia, there is a coffee called Kopi Joss which is made with charcoal. Loose coffee and sugar is added to a cup, followed by hot water, and then a hot piece of charcoal is added to cut the acidity. Just watch your tongue, you don’t want to burn yourself.