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January 2015 The Independent Voice

The Independent Voice
Newsletter of the Kona Coffee Farmers Association  
January 2015
PO Box 5436 Kailua Kona Hawaii 96745 USA                                


Message from the President
Message from the Editor
Truth in Labeling Petition
Intimidation by the “Big Guys”?
KCFA General Membership Meeting Coming Up
Kona Coffee Expo & trade Show
Xmas Benefit Party a Success
Auto-Renewal for KCFA Memberships
USDA CBB Research
Drink as Much Coffee as You Like
Editor- Clare Wilson

Message From the President
MAHALO   It has been my real honor to have served as President of this respected and dynamic Association for the last 3 years. Now it is time for a new President.  The KCFA is strong because of the tremendous dedication of all of our Board Members. Mahalo to Colehour Bondera, Tom Butler, Chris Coleman, Bruce Corker, Kally Goschke, Anita Kelleher, Mary Lou Moss, Kurt Schweickhard, and Suzanne Shriner for all your great energy and efforts. Thank you also to our Volunteers who contribute to making this the great Organization it is.
–Submitted by President Cecelia Smith
Message From the Editor
Mahalo to President Cecelia Smith for her dedication, tenacity, organizational skills and sense of humor. She has devoted so many hours of her time to skillfully direct KCFA in following its established goals. Besides those efforts she also manages our impressive web site.  It has been a pleasure to work with Cea during her tenure.
–Submitted by Clare Wilson, Editor  

Truth-In-Labeling Petition – please participate

Our Petition is up to almost 500 thoughtful signers and we want to get to 5000! Please write/email your family members, your customers, everyone you know and ask them to sign the Petition- takes only 30 seconds! Then… ask them to pass it along.  Anyone who approves of Truth in Labeling (and who would not?) should be encouraged to go and sign their names to let our Hawaii Legislators know they need to pass this Bill.  Originated by former County councilwoman Brenda Ford, the Bill will be up for voting in the State Legislature in the 2015 Session. Ford’s Bill asks for Truth (!) in Labeling for all Hawaii grown coffees.  Takes 30 seconds. Let’s work a miracle together and support 100% Kona coffee and do away with the ambiguous Kona “blend” term. Power to the Farmers! (click below to get to Petition)
–Submitted by Cecelia Smith


The Hawaii County Council on October 15 unanimously adopted Resolution No. 501-14 requesting the Legislature to raise the minimum Hawaii-grown content in coffee blends to 51% and to require disclosure of the origin of foreign-grown coffee on the label.
In reaction, Hawaii Coffee Company (Hawaii’s largest coffee blender) in November sent the following communication to Kona farmers who in the past have sold it coffee cherry:   

Click here to view the Communications

NOTE: That by requesting that signed copies be returned to it, Hawaii Coffee Company will have a record of which cherry farmers complied and which did not.
After the mailing of the Hawaii Coffee Company communication, KCFA Board members have been contacted by a number of cherry farmers saying that they fully support the changes requested by the Hawaii County Council’s Resolution.  HOWEVER, they also have indicated that they will not be publicly stating that support because of concern that they may be blackballed by the processors–and left without a market for their cherry.
We recognize and appreciate the dilemma of cherry farmers who face a market with a limited number of buyers for their crop.  We also recognize that many cherry farmers know full well that 10% blends damage the reputation of Kona coffee and reduce prices paid for their coffee cherry.
 –Submitted by the Branding Committee

KCFA’s Annual General Membership Meeting Coming Up! Sunday, January 11, 2015

(Looking out from the Beach Pavilion at Kahaluu)
All KCFA Members are heartily encouraged to attend our Annual Membership Meeting on Sunday, January 11 by joining us at the beautiful Kahaluu Beach Pavilion at the south end of Alii Drive. It’s always an enjoyable get together.
Hear summaries of the KCFA’s year’s activities, cast your vote for 2015-2016 KCFA Board Members, vote on a Bylaw change and simply enjoy talking story with fellow farmers.  Come at 11:30 for pupus and beer, followed by a Pot luck lunch*. At 1 pm, we will hold our Annual Meeting and Election of Officers for 2015-2016 as well as vote on a Bylaw Change.
*Potluck: Please bring something go along with KCFA’s shredded Barbeque chicken sandwiches.
PLEASE RSVP asap to – 329-4035
or and give the Number of People who will be attending with you.  We need to have enough food for you all! Thanks.

Kona Coffee Expo & Trade Show

Kona Coffee Mentioned in Coffee Supply Article
There are frequent articles about world coffee supply and consequent pricing. This article which discusses the current low supply and expected higher prices actually mentions Kona coffee – good to be recognized. 
The article: 

KCFA Christmas Benefit a Success!
Thank you KCFA Board Member Christine Coleman and Manny Ochoa for graciously holding the Coffee Ohana Christmas Benefit. It was a beautiful and festive evening with great food, fun and a time to just enjoy each other – a lot of great discussions and laughter throughout the evening. Chris and Manny’s KCFA Benefit raised over $1000 for the KCFA! Mahalo nui.  $460 was also raised by the attendees’ donations to the charity Chris and Manny personally chose- “The Giving Tree”.  The KCFA is so grateful to you!
Submitted by Cecelia Smith

 Auto Renewals for Your KCFA Membership

Expect to receive an auto-generated email from KCFA-if you haven’t already, reminding you of the renewal date for your KCFA Membership.  We set this up this past year and our investment seems to be working. Saves volunteer time! Once you’ve Logged-in to your KCFA Member account to renew, it would also be a good time to check out your listing information and update it, or even add a photo. If you have changed your email address since joining us, please let us know.
Questions may be sent to             

USDA Looking for Cooperators for CBB Research – Untreated/Ill-managed Coffee Farms
USDA CBB researchers are looking for untreated/ill-managed coffee farms to be used as CBB control demonstration plots. They would like to look at Beauveria sprays, sanitation/strip picking, and pruning and would need to have full access and the ability to manage the coffee trees.
Please contact Dr. Lisa Keith at for additional information and to participate as a cooperator.

The Case for Drinking as Much Coffee as You Like

Lindsay Abrams , The Atlantic, Nov 30 2012, 8:45 AM ET

The following excerpt is just a bit of a lot of interesting information on coffee consumption and health in this article:
 “Coffee and caffeine have been inexorably intertwined in our thinking, but truth is coffee contains a whole lot of other stuff with biological benefits,” said Martin. And most concerns about caffeine’s negative effects on the heart have been dispelled. In June, a meta-analysis of ten years of research went so far as to find an inverse association between habitual, moderate consumption and risk of heart failure. The association peaked at four cups per day, and coffee didn’t stop being beneficial until subjects had increased their daily consumption to beyond ten cups.
Caffeine might also function as a pain reliever. A study from September suggested as much when its authors stumbled across caffeinated coffee as a possible confounding variable in its study of the back, neck, and shoulder pains plaguing office drones: Those who reported drinking coffee before the experiment experienced less intense pain.
The data is even more intriguing — and more convincing — for caffeine’s effects as a salve against more existential pains. While a small study this month found that concentrated amounts of caffeine can increase positivity in the moment, last September the nurses’ cohort demonstrated a neat reduction in depression rates among women that became stronger with increased consumption of caffeinated coffee.
–Submitted by Anita Kelleher