An old coffee roaster
Sandra Scarr purchased a 5-acre coffee farm three years after retiring to the island of Hawaii (affectionately known as "The Big Island") in 1997. Prior to retirement, she spent thirty years as a professor at several mainland universities. Throughout her career, she was well known to friends and family as having the greenest thumb around. She was an avid orchid grower, so it made perfect sense for her to retire to Hawaii where she could garden all year round, and also join a large community of people who share her passion for orchids. After settling into island life with her three dogs and hundreds of orchids, she decided to try her hand at Hawaii's second most famous agricultural product, coffee. With the encouragement of her four children, Daily Fix Coffee was born.
In July 2007, Daily Fix Coffee moved to a larger, 9-acre farm in Holualoa, a few miles south of the first. Main reason for relocating was more spacious kennels for the cherished Labrador retrievers that she breeds. In 8 years of breeding, Aloha Labradors has become a widely-respected kennel.
The goal of Daily Fix Coffee is to bring estate-grown Kona coffee to the mainland. Currently, Kona coffee is often only available on the mainland as "Kona Blend", which may contain just 10% Kona coffee beans, with the balance being cheaper beans that produce an inferior cup of coffee. Daily Fix Coffee is 100% Kona: it is grown, roasted, and bagged in Holualoa, in the heart of Kona, Hawaii. Enjoy!
Where does coffee come from?
The coffee bean is actually the seed of the coffee fruit, or "cherry" (cherries are shown in the photos to the above right and left). Each cherry contains two beans, and in the rare event that a cherry contains only one, it is called a "peaberry". No one knows how peaberries come about, but they are very rare, making up only 1 to 5% of a harvest. You will notice that some of the cherries are red (ripe) and some are green (unripe). The coffee cherry does not ripen all at once, so in order to maximize our harvest and ensure that only ripe beans go into your coffee, we pick the cherry by hand, carefully selecting the ripe from the unripe, which will be left on the branch to ripen. This is how all Kona coffee is picked; because the demand far exceeds the supply, we try to ensure that we harvest every bean. Virtually no other coffees are picked by hand -- even other Hawaiian coffees -- they are instead picked by machines which shake the branches and then the unripe is separated and thrown away.
The beans are removed from the cherry (called "wet milling") and laid out in a thin layer outdoors to dry in the sun. Once dried, they are referred to as "coffee parchment" because each bean has a thin white parchment paper-like coating. The coffee parchment is then taken for "dry milling" in which the shell and parchment are removed to reveal the green coffee bean inside. The green coffee can be stored or taken directly to a roaster where it is roasted to produce the coffee that most of us buy. (Incidentally, some people like to roast their own coffee, so Daily Fix Coffee offers green 100% Kona coffee in 5 pound lots. Contact us for details.)