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Kona Coffee Farmers Say New Law Will Lead to Counterfeiting

Kona coffee farmers are warning Hawaii state legislators that a new law bypassing inspection requirements could lead to counterfeiting, as other exporters may try to pass their beans off as pure kona.

kona coffee farmers worry about new lawGov. Neil Abercrombie initially said he planned to veto a law that eliminated the requirement for mandatory Kona-certification inspections for coffee beans leaving the region, but he has since changed his mind, according to a Bloomberg Businessweek report.

The Kona Coffee Farmers Association has warned for months that the new law could lead counterfeiters to pass imported beans off as pure Kona, repeating the scandalous behavior that rocked the Hawaii’s coffee industry in the 1990s.

Bruce Corker, legislative committee chair of the farmers association, told Bloomberg that he expects history to repeat itself. And when it does, the smaller, legitimate Kona farmers livelihoods may be in jeopardy.

“This is a radical departure for protection of Hawaiian-grown coffee that has been in place for 15 years,” he said. “The danger is there’s going to be processors who don’t operate in good faith. Nobody is going to be carefully monitoring that.”

The full story: Bloomberg Businessweek


1 Comment

Blue Horse Kona Coffee

The abolishment of mandatory government inspection & certification of HAwaiian coffee is not a matter of that this ‘could’ lead to counterfeiting. But when and at what scale.

Kona coffee is at an all time high of popularity and name recognition in the world. It is been faked and mislabeled at unprecedented levels. From Zabars ‘Kona Style Coffee’ ( no Kona beans inside) to ‘Kona Smoothie’ (no Kona coffee inside) by Jack-In-The-Box chain to Kona Blend Coffees with undeclared percentage of actual Kona coffee. The 10% Kona Blends in Hawaii are never checked for their minimum content of 10% Kona beans either. Now roasters and companies can write “100% Kona coffee” on their mainland label without fear to ever get prosecuted.

Know thy Kona Coffee farmer! The only guarantee to get the real deal.

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