Coffee is one of the most popular beverages consumed around the world. Some estimate that more than 400 billion cups of coffee are consumed annually, with nearly 400 million cups downed in the United States every day!
That is a lot of java and the upward trend in coffee consumption doesn’t show any signs of slowing. The National Coffee Association found that the average growth rate for the sale of coffee and other hot beverages has held steady at 6.4% over the last five years. At the same time, farmable land with conditions suitable for coffee growing is expected to decrease by as much as 50% by the year 2050.
So, what does this mean for coffee-lovers everywhere? It means there has never been a better time to become a more conscious coffee connoisseur. Here are a few ways you can protect your favorite beverage, the people who make it possible, and support sustainability efforts across the entire coffee industry.
Buy Sustainably Farmed Coffee
Sustainability is a widely-used term today, but with all of its definitions, it can be confusing to know what sustainability means when it comes to the coffee in your cup.
At Kauai Coffee, sustainability isn’t just a buzzword. We are committed to growing coffee in a way that conserves natural resources and provides a safe, healthy, and positive work environment for everyone involved in its production.
Our coffee is grown using efficient drip irrigation that reduces water resources. We also produce nearly 4 million pounds of coffee cherry compost each year that is applied on the farm as a soil nutrient and use cover crops to reduce weeds and herbicide use naturally.
Know Your Certifications
When you buy coffee from a local shop or grocery, looking for products that display their commitment to sustainability and the environment on the package will help you be a conscious coffee connoisseur.
Kauai Coffee is the first and only coffee locally-grown in Hawaii to be triple certified by leading sustainability advocates. Harvest begins in September, and when our newest coffee hits shelves in 2020, you’ll see the following badges on our packaging. Here is what they mean:
- Fair Trade Certified: Goods that are Fair Trade Certified provide safe working conditions and sustainable livelihoods while protecting the environment and giving back to the communities where coffee is cultivated.
- Rainforest Alliance Certified: The Rainforest Alliance certified seal stands for efficient farm management that reduces soil erosion, water use, pollution, and waste while also protecting wildlife and reducing threats to the environment and human health.
- Non GMO Project: The Non GMO Project verification program is North America’s most rigorous third-party verification for non-GMO food and products.
Trace Your Supply Chain
For most coffee products, the supply chain is incredibly complex. From farming and harvesting to processing, roasting, and distributing, your coffee may be handled by numerous companies throughout the supply chain. Because of this complexity, it’s hard to know if each step your coffee takes before it hits your cup contributes positively to global sustainability efforts. Food chain traceability and knowing where your coffee comes from is essential to being a conscious coffee drinker.
Kauai Coffee Company is an authentic Hawaiian coffee estate which means every step of making your coffee from growth to packaging happens on our watch. We can trace the coffee in each bag of 100% Kauai Coffee to when and where it came from on our 3,000-acre farm. Here is how we do it:
- Harvesters log the field number and variety for each truckload of coffee cherry brought in to the factory.
- Once a truckload is pulped and ready to be dried, the field number and variety is logged with each dryer batch.
- Once dried, parchment coffee is unloaded into crates which are weighed and tagged with the date, dryer batch number, field number, and variety.
- In the dry milling process, approximately 60 crates of parchment coffee are loaded at a time and assigned a process number.
- After dry milling, green coffee is packaged into 100-lb. burlap bags and assigned a batch number along with the date, field number, and variety.
- All green coffee is inspected by the State Department of Agriculture and assigned a State Lot Number which is then stamped on each burlap bag.
- Green beans are brought to the roast plant and lot numbers, variety, and quantities are verified and added to a daily log before roasting.
- Kauai Coffee packaging bags are tracked by serial number or assigned lot numbers, and the database information is printed on the bottom of the bag.
Buy Local and be an Advocate for Change
Even if you don’t live in Hawaii when you purchase 100% Kauai Coffee from kauaicoffee.com, you are supporting a local community and economy with your purchase. Kauai Coffee is the largest coffee grower in the USA, and we are proud to provide exceptional Hawaiian coffee for you and your family.
You can help others be conscious coffee consumers. Share Kauai Coffee and our commitment to sustainability with your family and friends. Ask your local shops and restaurants about where their coffee comes from and support organizations that are leading the global sustainability movement such as the Sustainable Coffee Challenge, Non GMO Project, Rainforest Alliance, and Fair Trade Certified.