google-site-verification: google420bc12b3aca5bd2.html

Hawaiian Grown Coffee Make Excellent Gifts

Kona Coffee

While Kona Coffee is recognized throughout the world as an exceptionally smooth drink, Hawaii offers more than just the famous Kona Coffee. In the last 20 years, more and more growers have turned to coffee to replace pineapple and sugar cane as cash crops. Hawaii has the unique growing conditions that coffee plants thrive in. Coffee was introduced to Hawaii on the island of Kauai, but was wiped out by disease there.

Everyone who drinks coffee has heard of Kona Coffee, coffee that has been grown in a belt approximately 1 mile wide and 30 miles long, primarily on the slopes of Hualalai, one of 5 volcanoes that make up the Big Island of Hawaii. Grown between 800′ and 2500′ elevation with temperatures that never dip below 55F, but cooler nights to slow the ripening process of coffee cherries.

Photo courtesy of:  Tor Johnson/Hawaii Tourism Authority


The slower the coffee cherry takes to mature, the larger the bean and higher its water content, all of which adds to the flavor. Another benefit of this location is the cloud cover that moves in almost every afternoon, preventing it from getting too much sun. Coffee plants do not do well if it gets too much sun, which can burn its leaves and hurt the plant. (In other areas, coffee farms actually plant larger shade trees throughout the farms to provide shade and shelter from the afternoon sun.)

A final ingredient that makes Kona an ideal growing area for coffee is the excellent drainage that the lava provides. Along with the afternoon clouds, you also get some rain, but both the drainage and the slopes that are found in this area assure that the plants don’t sit in too much water.

Not Just From Kona Any More

So, what Mother Nature has provided is the ideal growing conditions for coffee plants to thrive. Many of these same elements can be found in other areas throughout the islands and coffee is now being grown on just about every island. There are also other areas of the Big Island that grow coffee including the up and coming Kau District, where Kau Coffee is gaining its own reputation as an excellent coffee.

Coffee is also grown on all the other major islands; Kauai, Maui, and Oahu. While Kona still is the name that comes to mind most often when people think of Hawaiian coffee, there are more choices than ever.

A final note on buying coffee from Hawaii. Several years ago, the state of Hawaii passed legislation requiring retailers to label their products as either pure (100%) or as a blend (10%). If you’re buying a blended Hawaiian coffee, you should know that you’re buying the “idea” of Hawaiian coffee, since 90% of it is coming from sources outside of Hawaii.

So, while it does cost more to buy 100% Hawaiian Coffee, whether that’s Kona, Kau, or whatever, spend the extra money and buy the 100% product. Worse case scenario, you can go home and make your own 50/50 blend if you want to stretch your coffee dollars. Not only will you be getting a better coffee, but your 50/50 blend will work out cheaper than the 10% blend would have cost you!

However, if you are buying coffee as gifts to take back to others, your dollar will obviously go further buying one of the many blends.

Fare Buzz

No Comments »

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a Reply

The owner of this website, Randy Yanagawa, is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking My Hawaii Food Fun to Amazon properties including, but not limited to,,,,, or