The Last of the Small Family Farms

October 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

The slopes of Mauna Loa on the Big Island of Hawaii are dotted with small, family farms. Most are growing the world’s best coffee, as well as food for their family and community. It is a lot of work to create an artisan product. It is picked – pulped – dried – hulled – roasted – bagged by hand. And even before that process takes place, the trees are lovingly tended to throughout the year – all by hand. There is pruning, hauling coffee limbs, chipping, fertilizing, mulching, suckering, and weeding. On average, each bean that ends up in one’s cup has been handled over 40 times – again, all by hand. That is a lot of labor. But farmers do what we do because we love working with the soil – or maybe it is a farm handed down through the generations – or we understand that we own our labor and our days. Yet, after picking all day and only making a dent in one of 5 orchards, I told Tim the price of our coffee has gone up for market this weekend! We are proud of what we create and so are a lot of wonderful farmers around South Kona. So the next time you head to “FourBucks” – maybe decide to go online and order a bag of 100% Kona coffee from a farm in Hawaii. It doesn’t have to be Luana Farm’s (although we have really good coffee – insert big smile).  Just use your wallet and support U.S. farmers. You’ll get a great cup of coffee and more importantly, you’ll make a family’s day.

A hui hou!

Karen

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