KONA COFFEE GRADING SYSTEM
HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHAT IS MEANT BY THE DIFFERENT GRADES OF KONA COFFEE AND HOW THE GRADES ARE DETERMINED?
Here is a simple explanation. Kona coffee is graded by the Hawaii Department of Agriculture based on a grading system that takes a number of factors into account, including a bean size, shape and number of defects in each bean. This grading process is done during the dry mill stage of processing Kona coffee before it is roasted. It can be very confusing to understand what the different grades are. I hope this helps so can you decide which grade is right for you.
There are five primary grades of Kona coffee beans that you will see mentioned on our website. We do not offer a SELECT grade as of now...but every season and harvest is different so we may offer this in the future.
PEABERRY This is a small pea shaped bean that is actually an anomaly because it is a result of only one coffee bean developing within a coffee cherry. Typically, two Kona beans grow within the cherry and it is very rare that a Peaberry bean is found. If we are lucky, Peaberry is only 3% to 5% of the entire season’s harvest.
These beans are very small in size but result in twice the flavor to create a very robust coffee.
KONA EXTRA FANCY These Kona coffee beans are the largest variety of the Kona coffee beans, with a mild flavor and smooth palate. These beans are also rare among the Kona beans and account for about 20% of what a crop will produce. Many coffee connoisseurs consider this to be the truest form of Kona coffee.
KONA FANCY These are also large coffee beans that are similar to Extra Fancy grade but have a bit more body but still retain a smooth consistency.
KONA NUMBER 1 This grade is sold as “Kona Grove” on our website. These are medium sized beans with bolder body and a nutty but smooth finish. This is typically a commercial grade of Kona coffee
KONA PRIME These are the smallest of the Kona coffee beans. While still a very nice coffee, this grade gives up some of the smoothness of the better grades are is not quite as mild. Anything smaller or with more defects than Prime grade do not meet the quality requirements to be sold as a Kona coffee and is considered off grade.
KONA SELECT This grade is sometimes referred to as Estate grade. This grade has not been sorted and contains all of the afore mentioned grades except off graded beans.