The British have long favored tea as their caffeinated beverage of choice, but another drink had its moment during the glory days of the British empire -- coffee.In the 18th and 19th centuries, the British controlled vast coffee plantations across southern India and Sri Lanka. But a strange fungal disease called coffee rust became widespread by the mid-19th century, crippling the industry and forcing producers to switch to tea cultivation. The change effectively changed beverage preferences across the empire as coffee drinkers were forced to switch to tea. Now the shift could be happening again in this part of the world as coffee rust strikes at crops across Central and South America. A recent outbreak is causing the worst devastation since the disease was first spotted in the Western Hemisphere in 1970. The problem is especially concerning when you consider that a big chunk of the coffee consumed in the U.S. and abroad comes from beans grown in Central and South America.With that in mind, could you kick the coffee habit and switch to tea?