Hawai’i Coffee Association to Host 27th Annual Conference and Trade Show

Coffee growers from across the state are invited to attend a weekend of action-packed events, including the 13th Annual Statewide Coffee Tasting Contest at the 27th Fair and Hawai’i Coffee Association annual conference.

Keynote speaker Vern Long of World Coffee Research

The May 19-21 gathering will offer a wealth of educational opportunities and competitions headlined by keynote speaker Vern Long of World Coffee Research. Two inaugural HCA Café Collective Committee events are also on the agenda: the SigBev Barista competition and a Seed-to-Brew roundtable.

The conference, trade show and competitions are open to association members and the wider community and will be hosted at the Outrigger Kona Resort & Spa in Keauhou.

“This year’s conference offers a full range of educational opportunities, fellowship and fun,” said Chris Manfredi, HCA’s Executive Director and Past President, in a press release. “We have planned interactive workshops on tasting, roasting and grafting in the field, as well as discussions on soil health, traceability of coffee origin, on-farm technology and updates on the latest industry research and legislative issues. Attendees will also enjoy a trade show, silent auction and numerous networking opportunities.

Additionally, HCA is hosting its 13th annual statewide coffee tasting contest, with winners to be announced May 20 at an awards ceremony. The winners will be announced and the ceremony will include a sampling of the highest rated coffee from each growing region.


Competition coffees will be blind tasted using the Specialty Coffee Association scoring system. Eligible applications will be accepted until April 29. Pacific Coffee Research will oversee the contest. Complete rules and entry forms can be found at the Hawai’i Coffee Association website.


Local baristas also have the chance to participate in the first Café Collective SigBev contest at HiCO in Kona. A panel of judges will score drinks made from local coffees and participants will have the opportunity to taste. The event is open to the public; free entry.

The new interactive Seed-to-Brew roundtable will bring together speakers representing four major elements of the local coffee chain: growers, processors, roasters and baristas. These industry experts will discuss their roles and answer questions posed by a moderator, followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

The conference’s keynote speaker, Long, will present “Collaborative Coffee R&D – Working Together to Secure the Future of Coffee in Hawai’i”. CEO of World Coffee Research, Long brings 25 years of international agricultural research experience.


For a complete list of conferences and trade shows and to register, click here. Sponsorship and trade show opportunities are also available and silent auction donations are welcome.

Find the official rules and the entry form required for the cupping contest by clicking on here.

This year’s conference sponsors include the State Department of Agriculture, Oritain, Savor Brands, Honolulu Coffee, WECO Optical Sorting, KTA Super Stores, Badge X2 Fungicide/Bactericide, Bad Ass Coffee of Hawai’i, RCIS, Nutrien Ag Solutions and Delta Technology Corp. .

The mission of the Hawai’i Coffee Association is to represent all sectors of the hawai’i coffee industry. Its main objective is to increase awareness and consumption of Hawaiian coffees. To learn more about the association, click here.

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