A coffee break in the United States and elsewhere is a short mid-morning rest period granted to employees in business and industry. An afternoon coffee break, or afternoon tea, often occurs as well.
The coffee break originated in the late 19th century in Stoughton, Wisconsin, with the wives of Norwegian immigrants. The city celebrates this every year with the Stoughton Coffee Break Festival. In 1951, Time noted that
“Since the war, the coffee break has been written into union contracts”