World Bulletin/News Desk
A woman from a volunteer initiative to promote Turkish coffee has started a petition on charge.org to appeal to famous Turkish surgeon Mehmet Öz, calling on him to celebrate Turkish coffee culture.
The campaign, titled “Dr. Mehmet Cengiz Öz, Turkish-American TV show host: Celebrate Turkish coffee culture's 500-year-old history,” aims to gather at least 5,000 signatures; it currently has some 250.
What urged Gizem Şalcıgil White, the founder of the Mobile Turkish Coffee Truck, to start the petition was a recent TV program hosted by Dr. Öz, where he promoted a super-potent coffee as a heart-protecting and antioxidant beverage, saying it was Greek coffee.
“As a person of Turkish heritage, I look up to Dr. Mehmet Öz as an inspiring figure. Millions of people are exposed to Turkey and Turkish culture through Dr. Öz's television program. Turkish people proudly applaud his success and contributions to society,” the “Turkish Coffee Truck lady,” as she calls herself, says in the petition, calling on Dr. Öz to recognize the significance of Turkey's cultural contribution to the world.
White also gives a historical background of Turkish coffee in the petition: The properties of coffee were first observed in Ethiopia by herders who watched their goats become hyperactive after eating the beans. Coffee beans were brought to İstanbul in 1517 from Yemen and then brewed and served in a unique way that has been a fundamental part of Turkish culture and heritage ever since.
“Turkish coffee has even been submitted to UNESCO's [United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization] ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage' list as a cultural inheritance that should be protected,” the petition says, inviting everyone to celebrate “this fascinating tradition.”
“Mobile Turkish Coffee Truck” is a volunteer initiative to promote Turkish coffee culture and to engage people in “coffee conversations.”
The goal of the initiative is to spark interest in Turkish culture while enhancing the bonds of friendship between nations, the founders of the initiative state on their website -- http://mobileturkishcoffeetruck.org/Last Mod: 07 Mayıs 2013, 10:49