We human like to venture out and try on new things. Once the novelty is popularised on the mass media and sold as 'exotic' in big department store in a capital city of a developed country, the thing became a hit. Celebrities tried and endorse it, and everyone in the developing countries want to produce it.
Even though the thung is shit. Literally, faeces of a shy nocturnal animal from South East Asia, has become a big hit in London. 'Kopi Luwak' or Luwak coffee came from the faeces of civets (in Indonesian: Luwak, or its Latin name: Paradoxurus hermaphroditus).
In its natural habitats, the rain forests of Indonesia, they eat and cofee beans - either wild coffee plants or steal some from plantations. Human collected their droppings, and found that the coffee is nicer after being digested by the civets. So the original coffee luwak was discovered. Today, the coffee luwak sold in London's famous Harods department store with ridiculously expensive price, does not come from civets living happilly in their natural habitat. Today there are luwak farms all over Indonesia, both producing luwak coffee and marketed as tourist destinations.
(Photo from www.kuncitips.com)
Now here's the news: the civets living in cages are not happy at all. While their natural diet consist of but not exclusively coffee beans, in their cages in luwak farms they are forced to eat coffee and coffee only! Here is an article in Indonesian exposing their living condition in farms (http://www.kuncitips.com/2015/05/kisah-tragis-di-balik-nikmatnya-kopi.html?m=1). Not a pleasant live at all. Even the person who introduced Luwak coffee to the UK is now campaigning against farmed Luwak coffee.... http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2013/sep/13/civet-coffee-cut-the-crap
Personally, I never wanted to try luwak coffee because it's an overpriced shit (literally coming from back end of the creature, right?). If anyone else wanted to spend lots of money on that, I did not care. But now that we know that the industry is hurting innocent civets.... Come on, wake up and let's campaign against this cruelty. My argument is: it's not worth buying the faeces of tortured animals.
We consumers have the power to boicott and spread the words to boicott this ill treatment of fellow Earth dwellings. So please save your money and save these lovely shy creature by not buying the shit luwak coffee... Want is different than need. We do not need to have faeces coffee. There are many other delcious coffees produced and sold in fair trade system, choose them instead.
PETA has a good article on this. Disturbing report by their investigator http://www.peta.org.uk/blog/civet-coffee-a-sip-of-cruelty/