New Coffee Labeling Requirements to Take Effect

The Hawaiian Coffee Labeling Act 211, which requires all Hawaii-branded coffee products to include a disclosure of the coffee’s origin and percentage of locally grown and other coffee grown elsewhere, is set to take effect next week. The law also mandates that coffee labeled as “100% Hawaiian” must be grown and processed in the state. However, the Hawaii Department of Agriculture has not been provided with additional staffing to enforce these requirements.

The state Legislature has also passed a measure requiring all roasted coffee, instant coffee, and ready-to-drink beverages containing Hawaii-grown and Hawaii-processed coffee blended with coffee of another regional origin to contain no less than 51% coffee by weight from the Hawaii geographic origin claimed on the label. This requirement applies to coffee beans, roasted coffee, instant coffee blended with beans from other areas, ready-to-drink coffee beverages, and single-serve and bulk coffee packaging.

The HDOA’s Measurement Standards Branch is available for retail information or to report possible mislabeling or non-compliance. Retailers that do not package roasted coffee, instant coffee, or ready-to-drink coffee beverages are exempt from liability for the sale of coffee products that use a label or advertisement in violation of the coffee labeling law.

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