While most of us do not enjoy the thought of a new tax, Kona coffee farmers are asking State of Hawaii lawmakers to introduce a bill that will place a tax of one penny on every pound of green coffee that enters or leaves the state. This new revenue will then be used to eradicate the coffee borer beetle that has been decimating Kona’s coffee crop for over a year now.
Kona coffee farmers have already been waging a battle against the coffee borer beetle. The borer beetle has caused the price of this premium Hawaii coffee to go up significantly this past year. If the bill gets passed, the tax will pay for state employees to remove all diseased coffee trees from the area.
Most Kona coffee farmers are already fighting the beetle on their own farms. However, the diligence of one farmer does not equal success against the beetle. This is because the coffee borer beetle continues to infest the coffee trees of farmers who are negligent, as well as from feral coffee trees in the area. The bill, if passed, will also allow the State of Hawaii to condemn a coffee farmer’s land if they do not help to contain the spread of the borer beetle.
So what does this mean for Hawaii coffee aficionados? If the bill is passed, you will pay an extra cent for your cup of coffee. If you are buying a pound of coffee beans, you will pay an extra cent. Paying a penny is a small price to pay to help save this premium Hawaii coffee. This penny tax is needed so that one of the world’s greatest coffees will survive for generations of coffee drinkers to enjoy.