Did You Know This Beloved Workplace Ritual Was Invented In Buffalo?
Ahhh, the coffee break. Remember those?
These days, it seems like the office coffee break has gone extinct, thanks to the workday grind. Or, if you work from home, your “coffee break” might actually last all day long. But for those who remember, the coffee break was a daily part of office life.
Coffee breaks weren’t necessarily just to get caffeinated (although we’re sure it helped). Rather, coffee breaks were a time to take a beat away from a hectic work day and relax for a few minutes. Whether you use your break to have a quick gossip sesh with co-workers, solve your daily Wordle, or scroll through Instagram, we’re big fans of the coffee break.
Another reason we love a good coffee break? It may have been invented right here in Buffalo. Yes, really!
The Benefits Of Coffee Breaks In The Workplace
We think that the workplace “coffee break” should make a return to American offices. Not just because it’s a nice reprieve from our workload, but because it has a ton of physical and mental benefits.
Studies show that a short coffee break at work can:
- Increase productivity
- Build camaraderie among co-workers
- Relieve stress
- Increase physical activity throughout the day
- Improve memory function
It looks like whoever started the tradition of coffee breaks was definitely on to something. Speaking of…
Coffee Breaks May Have Started Here In Buffalo
Buffalo, New York is famous for inventing the chicken wing (among other things), but the best thing that may have been created in the City of Good Neighbors has to do with drinks rather than food.
In 1965, a nationwide article was quoted as saying that “the coffee break originated at the Barcalo Manufacturing Co. in Buffalo in 1902.” The company’s founder, Edward Barcalo, is well-documented in history as an employer who cared deeply about his employees’ health and well-being.
But Wait! That’s Not The Whole Story
There’s actually another famous Buffalo company who wants the credit for inventing the “coffee break” as we know it.
According to research done by the Larkin Chamber of Commerce, it’s actually Buffalo’s Larkin Soap Company that has “dibs” on beginning the tradition of coffee breaks, with memos referencing it dating back to as early as 1900.
Even though other cities may claim to have kicked off coffee breaks in America, we’re going to go ahead and take the credit for this one here in Buffalo.
Keep scrolling to see the other cool things invented right here in Buffalo, New York!