August 20, 2019
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April 2017- The Independent Voice

              The Independent Voice
“Best Agricultural Newsletter in Hawaii”
Newsletter of the Kona Coffee Farmers Association
                          April 2017

PO Box 5436 Kailua Kona Hawaii 96745 USA                                                                           

10th Annual EXPO
Legislative Update
Coffee Country in Colombia
OZY Reports on Truth-in-Labeling for Kona Coffee
Immigration Crackdown Concerns
Coffee Production Up in the State
House Resolution Concerning Immigration
Luis Aristizabal Video
Learn the Kona Coffee Heritage
Combine Miracle-Gro with Botanigard?
Salute to Supporting Business Member – Pooki’s Mahi
Recipe: Coffee Vinaigrette
Write to Us

Editor – Clare Wilson

EXPO – 10th Annual – April 28th
Another great EXPO – at this time there are 27 vendors and agencies signed up. (List will be updated regularly here) This is a great opportunity to meet and talk with those who are there for us.

Among the speakers are: Sarah Townsend (organic certification)< Andrea Kawabata (flat bark beetle), Robbie Hollingsworth( CBB control), Kay Dixon (coffee roasting), and Melanie Bondera (pesticide-free farming).

 –Submitted by Karen Zulkowski

Legislative Update

HB186–EXTENDING THE HDOA CBB SUBSIDY PROGRAM: HB186 will extend the Hawaii Department of Agriculture-administered subsidy program for Botanigard and Mycotrol for two additional years through June 30, 2021, and may provide for additional funding for the program.
HB186 was passed out of the House of Representatives on March 3 and has now been passed out of the Senate Agriculture & Environment Committee and Senate Ways & Means Committee. It is now before the full Senate. “Thank You” to the many KCFA Members who took time to submit written testimony in support of HB186 to the four Legislative Committee hearings held on the bill.  It looks likely that the extension of the subsidy program will pass.  Whether significant additional funding will come out of the reconciliation process between the House and Senate is less certain.  
 HB256–COFFEE LABELING REFORM: This bill [providing for a minimum of 51% Hawaii-grown coffee and identification of the origin of foreign-grown coffee in “Hawaii Coffee Blends”] was killed in the House Consumer Protection & Commerce when Committee Chairman Angus McKelvey refused to schedule a hearing before the March 2 deadline.   McKelvey disregarded resolutions from the Hawaii County Council, the Hawaii County Democratic Party Convention, and the Hawaii State Democratic Party Convention—and the fact that HB256 was included in the Democratic Party’s 2017 package of legislative priorities. Also, State Democratic Party Chair Tim Vandeveer had written specifically to warn Rep. McKelvey that the bill should be addressed “at [a] hearing and not behind closed doors.”  Although dead for the 2017 Session, HB256 will be pending before the Legislature for consideration in the 2018 Session.
[Interesting Footnote:  In a highly unusual mid-Session action, on March 13 Rep. McKelvey was removed as Chair of the Consumer Protection & Commerce Committee and replaced by Rep. Roy Takumi.]
 –Submitted by the Legislative Committee

Coffee Country in Colombia

For an interesting, pleasant and exciting visit to the coffee fincas in Colombia, read this article from
 –Submitted by Carol Seel

Kona Coffee and Truth-in-Labeling as reported by OZY
“OZY is a global magazine that delivers you cutting-edge viewpoints, worldwide stories and a daily dose of remarkable.”  In their March 4, 2017 edition, they reported on the Kona coffee truth-in-labeling situation. Our story is out there – maybe someday those who can change the status quo will step up to the plate and make it happen.
–Submitted by Anita Kelleher

Local Newspaper Report on Immigration Crackdown Concerns 
For those of you who missed this article about KFCA’s concerns about immigration crackdowns, here it is:
 –Submitted by Christine Coleman

Coffee Production up in the State
Another informative article in our local newspaper:
 –Submitted by Christine Coleman

House Resolution Concerning Immigration
The West Hawaii Today reports that the Hawaii House of Representatives has adopted a resolution that declares Hawaii as a ho`okipa, or welcoming state. It is intended to keep that state and counties from honoring immigration detainers issued by U.S.
The entire article can be found here:
 –Submitted by Kay Dixon

CBB Management video by Luis Aristizabal

Luis Aristizabal came to Kona. In 2012, he revolutionized the way we look at our fields.  On Sept 19th 2015 he returned to give a talk on how to better control CBB through effective harvesting, field sanitation, 30 trees survey and more methods of IPM.  Colombia manages infestation levels of under 3 percent. Luis detailed strategies and tactics that may enable us to do the same in Kona.
Luis Aristizabal was raised on a Colombian coffee farm and worked for Cenicafe as a researcher and extension agent with coffee farmers in Colombia.   Following his time as an entomologist at the University of Florida, he moved to Kona and is now an IPM Consultant His focus is on practical research that benefits farmers in economically feasible ways.
In September 2015, Luis gave a workshop On Cultural Practices & Sanitation for CBB.  The event was co-sponsored by The Kohala Center, SHAC and the KCFA Pest and Disease Committee. To see a video of the workshop, go to and scroll down the right side of the page.
 –Submitted by Chet Gardiner

Learn the Kona Coffee Heritage
“The Kona Coffee Story: Along the Hawaii Belt Road”

(Photo Courtesy of the Kona Coffee Historical Society) Mr. Masaichi Fukumitsu and his donkey-circa1934
The exhibit opened Monday, March 27, 2017 and is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and 1st Saturday of each Month from 10a.m.-2p.m.

Sharing the rich history of coffee in Kona through the eyes of families and farmers who built the lucrative industry, Kona Historical Society is presenting the award-winning exhibit, “The Kona Coffee Story:  Along the Hawaii Belt Road.” The exhibit is slated to run March through November in the H.N. Greenwell Store Museum in Kealakekua. With the introduction of coffee to Kona in 1828, the development of Kona’s world-famous coffee industry experienced its highs and lows.

Voices of hard working coffee farmers and community leaders can be heard through personal accounts, historic photographs and artifacts featured in this exhibit, all of which tell the compelling story of the early days of Kona coffee. A product of extensive community collaboration led by the Kona Japanese Civic Association and the Japanese American National Museum, Kona Historical Society’s renewal of this world-traveled exhibit offers visitors the opportunity to be inspired by stories of Kona’s coffee pioneers and learn more about the deep roots of Kona’s coffee heritage and culture. This exhibit was generously funded by the State of Hawaii Grant in Aid and sponsored by Kona Trans.
 –Submitted by Bob Smith

Foliar Fertilizer “Miracle-Gro” combined with Beauveria bassiana?
Recently I learned from BEI that “many” farmers had been ordering Miracle-Gro™ to mix with Beauveria bassiana (one brand name is BotaniGard from BioWorks) to provide both CBB mitigation and foliar fertilizer. The immediate question we should ask ourselves is whether Miracle-Gro™ can be mixed with B. bassiana without harming the fungus. This question is important because some plant fertilizers include sulphur or sulphur-based salts that are harmful to fungi such as B. bassiana. Neither the BotaniGard label nor any approved tank-mix compatibility charts mentioned Miracle-Gro™, so are not very helpful in answering the question. The Miracle-Gro™ label is not sufficiently specific about the chemical form of most of the contents to help answer the question. The next step was to contact BioWorks (Daniel C. Peck, Ph.D.; Product Development Manager & Entomologist) and ask about the compatibility. I received the following response (with permission to share with KCFA farmers):

 “I appreciate you reaching out to us at BioWorks, and I think I can give you a positive reply.  You are right that we do not have specific compatibility testing to report between BotaniGard and Miracle-Gro.  Nevertheless, all the work done (with other products, and based on grower use reports) has never shown there to be a biological or physical incompatibility between BG and foliar fertilizers when tank-mixed.  That said, the tank-mix solution should not stand for more than 4 hours.  This might represent a challenge to some growers, but it is an important practice for them to adhere to.” 
The other suggestion I would add is to thoroughly dilute the Miracle-Gro™ by mixing it into the tank before adding the B. bassiana. This prevents the possibility of a local chemical shock that might effect the B. bassiana to occur as the Miracle-Gro™ dissolves. Once the Miracle-Gro™ is thoroughly mixed, then add your surfactant and B. bassiana. If you absolutely must add the Miracle-Gro™ after the B. bassiana, minimize any chemical shock by dissolving the Miracle-Gro™ into as much water as possible before adding it to your tank.

Lastly, this information in no way promotes Miracle-Gro™ or represents that Miracle-Gro™ is more cost effective or a better product than other foliar fertilizers.
–Submitted by Bob Kraus

Salute to Supporting Business Member – Pooki’s Mahi
>From their website :
“Pooki’s Mahi is a Silicon Valley-based etailer offering exotic Hawaiian coffees, award-winning teas, sweeteners, gourmet salts, and other specialty food products at reasonable prices.  In 2012 we incubated and piloted several products over five product lines.  Since its online launch in 2013, Pooki’s Mahi’s products have been a favorite of customers, charities, celebrities and athletes and have been featured at red carpet events including Celebrity Gift Suites and Celebrity Poker tournaments.  The products have been endorsed by many celebrities and athletes and seen on several television shows.  

Pooki’s Mahi, founded by Silicon Valley High Tech Executive Les Magsalay-Zeller, started with exotic coffees rated 95+ by Coffee Review from the world’s champion roasters and baristas and teas rated 90+ points by World Tea Ratings from the world’s champion brew masters.  Today, our product offerings include a deluxe assortment of macadamia nut products, drink sweeteners like brown rock sugar, various gourmet salts and much more.  For more information on Pooki’s Mahi’s selection of exotic coffees, teas and other gourmet food products, visit

Recipe: Coffee Vinaigrette

“This marvelous, easy vinaigrette can be used for salads or as an accompaniment to grilled beef, shrimp, pork, or foie gras.
Makes 2-3 servings
1 teaspoon coffee, very finely ground
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
¼ cup sherry wine vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Combine dry ingredients and vinegar in a non-reactive mixing bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil until well incorporated. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve (keeps for up to one week).
Recipe by Melissa De Leon Douglass

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