Coffee profits down, prices up after coffee season cut short

November 4, 2018

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii (AP) — Coffee season ended abruptly, some two months earlier than usual, for farmers on the west side of Hawaii’s Big Island.

West Hawaii Today reported that while the cause is likely multi-faceted, the results are becoming clear.

Yield for 2018 will drop significantly from average levels, which will create a seller’s market and push prices upward.

Suzanne Shriner, president of the Kona Coffee Farmers Association, says anecdotal evidence generated from member reports points to as high as a 30 percent dip in yield for many local farmers.

Farmers and researchers named a number of factors that likely contributed to cutting the coffee season short — less rainfall between April and June, increased gas emissions from Kilauea volcano manipulating the amount of light at different times during the season and the availability of labor.

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