Coorg is the primary growing district for India's fledgling coffee industry. The country's rural economy in other areas is dominated by tea and cotton, so the coffee farmers and bean processors are little known of, only producing 2% of the world's annual coffee output. Coorg produces 80% of India's annual coffee crop, the majority of which is exported. The scale of plantations vary from small scale farms lived on and worked by a single family, to larger operations with permanent staff and wider distribution. The coffee is harvested, dried and processed (husked) in the local area.
The area, also known as Kodagu, is the native home of the tribal Kodava people who now make up roughly 20% of the population, and still mostly work in the agricultural industry. The region used to be a separate state until it was swallowed up into Karnataka in 1956. During the Raj it was controlled separately by the British, due to the fertile soil in the region which has for many years has produced coffee and many of the spices and black pepper used in India.