Lawsuit filed against Hawaii retailers mislabeling Kona brew

HILO — Hawaii coffee farmers have filed a lawsuit against major retailers after scientific tests confirm Kona coffee is mislabeled as authentic.

West Hawaii Today reported Tuesday that three Kona coffee farmers say a coffee lawsuit is brewing on the Big Island after chemical tests completed in May reveal commercial products are not what they say.

Farmers say the coffee beans’ flavor comes from volcanic soil on Hawaii island and scientific tests can isolate the unique chemicals.

Farmers say not only are products mislabeled, but more than 20 million pounds (9 million kilograms) of Kona-labeled coffee is sold when only 2.7 million pounds (1 million kilograms) are grown annually.

The coffee supplier defendants say there’s no law prohibiting them from labeling coffee as Kona if it is sold out of state.

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Information from: West Hawaii Today, http://www.westhawaiitoday.com

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