Kopi Luwak or Civet Coffee refers to the coffee processed from coffee beans that have been eaten and defecated by palm civets. At five times the price of Arabica coffee, Kopi Luwak is the world's most expensive coffee, without any particular attribute for being so. The coffee has been widely found to simply taste bad, and it appears that it is purchased for novelty rather than quality. But the real damage that civet coffee does, is to civets themselves. The trade has given way to an entire racket in which civets are captured, caged in deplorable conditions, starved and force-fed with coffee beans resulting in a high mortality of these animals. Kopi Luwak seems to be yet another Oriental gimmick crafted solely to defy logic and harass wildlife.
This comic appeared in my fortnightly column in The Hindu's BLink here.