Kona Coffee: Reason Why It’s so pricey l Brands 100%
Kona Coffee: Hawaii Kona coffee is special. Kona coffee is cultivated in Hawaii under special circumstances and harvested according to tight criteria. Due to limited production and great quality, it’s more pricey
If you’ve heard of Kona Coffee and wondering what makes it so great, read on.
Kona Coffee’s History:
There’s a good chance you’ve heard of Hawaii’s Kona Coffee, which is known for being more costly than other varieties and often regarded as the best coffee in the world by many of its devotees.
- On January 21, 1813, a Spaniard named Francisco de Paula y Marin reported in his notebook that he had planted coffee on the island of Oahu. This was the first time coffee had been introduced to Hawaii. Grapes, sugarcane, mango, and pineapple were all grown successfully on Hawaiian islands, but the fate of the first coffee plants is unknown.
- John Wilkinson, a British botanist who sailed to Hawaii aboard the HMS Blonde with Captain Lord Byron in 1825, brought coffee trees from Brazil and planted them in Manoa Valley and elsewhere on Oahu.
- It didn’t take long for word of this special coffee to spread throughout the globe, and the rest is history. More than three million coffee trees were planted there before 1900, but not all of them were in the Kona belt, about which more will be spoken below.
- All of this began in Kailua-Kona Kona’s neighborhood. Up to 95% of all coffee beans grown in the area are used to make Kona coffee.
- Only beans grown in this specific region may legitimately be labeled as “Kona coffee.” There are now over 800 Kona coffee plantations, all located inside the 30-by-1-mile Kona belt.
Traditional family farms in the region tend to be less than 5 acres in size. Approximately 2300 square meters of buildable space is available.
Where To Grow Kona?
The Big Island of Hawaii is home to the world-famous coffee producing region of Kona. Because of the region’s long history of coffee growing, it has helped to consolidate its image, which has led to the production of fake Kona coffee. The term “100% Kona” is subject to stringent regulations, and current island law mandates that any Kona blend must disclose the percentage of Kona coffee it contains.
Over 800 coffee farms may be found in North and South Kona. Coffee plantations may be found on both Hualalai and Mauna Loa. The climate of Kona, with its mineral- and volcanic-rich soil, cloudy skies, low wind speeds, and densely forested environments, is ideal for the development of coffee trees.
The categorization of Kona coffee beans:
Hawaii (or more specifically, Kona) has its own coffee grading system, which is based mostly on bean size but is also separated into grade 1 and grade 2 categories.
- Type 1 beans are the regular, two-bean kind found in coffee berries.
- Type 2 coffee is just peaberries (aka cults).
Class I Kona beans:
Compared to class II beans, which only contain one bean per cherry, these have 2. They are then separated into smaller batches based on their size, moisture content, and quality.
In the end, what does this mean? The best coffee beans are grade I. These are used to make higher-end products like Kona Prime, Kona Select, and Kona Extra Fancy.
Class II Kona coffee beans:
Peaberry Number 1 or Peaberry Prime. Kona coffee comes from these 2 beans. There are classes III and below, but they aren’t Kona.
Here Are the 3 Top Kona Coffee Brands:
Want to know where to get a coffee that is 100% Kona? Listed below are the top 3 recommendations we have:
1. Royal Kona 100% Hawaiian Kona Coffee:
2. Farm-fresh: 100% Kona Coffee – Medium Roast – Arabica Whole Beans
3. Hawaiian Kona Coffee Extra Fancy, 100% Pure
Is there a special reason why Kona coffee is so pricey?
There were extensive early-on planting initiatives to place the Hawaiian Islands on the global coffee map, despite the fact that the islands are not particularly well-suited to coffee plants.
Surely the high cost of living in Kona is due mostly to the high cost of labor. Kona coffee is cultivated in Hawaii, a US state, and is subject to US industry laws.
Coffee is grown and sold across the globe, often in regions without labor restrictions. They can manufacture the same quantity of coffee for a fraction of the cost owing to cheaper labor costs — they don’t have the same minimum wage laws as the US.
8 pounds of fruit produce 1 pound of Kona. One coffee tree produces 16 pounds of fruit, or 0.9kg of roasted coffee before sorting, drying, or roasting.
2. Transportation expenses:
It’s not easy to grow your own coffee beans. It grows atop the world’s biggest active volcano, Mauna Loa. The slope and climate make it impossible to physically pick most cherries.
The coffee must be sent from Hawaii to California, 3,000 miles away, and then to Asia, 5,000 miles.
3. The limitation of Kona coffee:
It can’t be brewed in vast quantities like regular coffee. The Kona Belt is a narrow strip of territory, around a mile wide and 30 miles long, where coffee may legally claim the “Kona” label and be sold as authentic.
Because of this, Kona coffee only makes up around 1% of the world’s total coffee output. This land is used completely and effectively, but it is still cheaper than industrial manufacturing.
Kona produces 1.3 million kg of green, unroasted coffee beans annually. It’s a fraction of what other nations can create. The annual coffee output of Brazil and Vietnam, for instance, is over 7 billion and 4 billion pounds, respectively.
What makes Kona coffee special? Should I shell out more money since it’s produced in the United States and in a more forgiving climate? Kona isn’t only for those reasons.
How Valuable Is Kona Coffee?
The Kona coffee belt has the ideal height, volcanic soil, cloud cover, and temperatures to produce coffee. Organic fertilizers including seaweed, coffee beans, and more are frequently made on-farm. Donkeys, sheep, geese, and chickens remove weeds and pests and provide natural manure.
Mark Twain said in 1866: “Kona coffee has a deeper taste than any other, cultivated where it can”.
Due to prior problems involving the unrestricted selling of other coffee beans branded as Kona, accurate coffee bean labeling involves extensive testing. Kona-only.
Hawaii’s Department of Agriculture inspects and verifies each Kona coffee bean’s provenance. Joseph Rivera developed this approach.
When you combine an ideal growing climate with stringent standards, tight labeling, and planting area limitations (raising competitiveness), you obtain Kona’s top-quality coffee.
Even though it may break the bank, the costly Kona coffee is well worth it. Because of its status as the only US coffee-producing state, many have remarked on the positive working conditions associated with its beans. Employees may be underpaid, subjected to unsafe working conditions, etc. when customers choose other coffees. Several farms produce the famous Kona coffee. There is a wide range in both price and preference. The Kona belt is just 30 miles long, but the slope of the volcano and other variables affect harvest success. Kona coffee is exclusive to Hawaii and not available elsewhere. It does very well in the unusual conditions of Hawaii, with its rich volcanic soil.
CentralParkWestCafe is the best place to get up-to-date coffee news and reviews.
He has lived in Thailand for more than 2 years and in Vietnam for over a year to explore the coffee culture.
He is the Co-founder of Centralparkwestcafe With more than 20 years in coffee, he brings more subtle perspectives that you may find interesting.