Green Coffee Standards

The Hawaii Department of Agriculture has baseline requirements for exportable green beans:

"Hawaii Coffee" Labeling

In accordance with HAR 4-143, all Hawaii green coffee shipped out of state must meet or exceed Hawaii No. 3 green coffee standards in order to be labelled as “Hawaii coffee”:

“Green coffee destined for shipment in wholesale quantities to points outside the State shall meet the requirements of Hawaii No. 3 green coffee…” 

Offgrade Coffee

Any green coffee that does not meet Hawaii No. 3 green standards must be clearly labelled OFFGRADE COFFEE and cannot use Hawaii as the geographical indication of origin:

“Offgrade green coffee may be exported provided that all containers are printed or labeled in bold letters of not less than one and one half inch (3.8 cm) in height OFFGRADE COFFEE parallel to and within twelve inches of the top of or on both sides of each container. In addition, all invoices for this product shall be marked in large bold capital letters OFFGRADE COFFEE.”

For further details, please see Hawaii rules here.

The following chart details all the grades that are allowed for export under Hawaii State law:

Extra Fancy Type 1 – 19
Type 2 – 13
8 9 – 12% uniformly green
Fancy Type 1 – 18
Type 2 – 12
12 9 – 12% uniformly green
Number 1 Type 1 – 16
Type 2 – 10
18 9 – 12% uniformly green
Select Optional
(May be specified)
5% 9 – 12% ——–
Prime Optional
(May be specified)
15% 9 – 12% ——–
Natural Prime Optional
(May be specified)
15% 8 – 13% ——–
Mixed Natural Prime Optional
(May be specified)
15% 8 – 13% ——–
Hawaii No. 3*** ——– 35% 9 – 12% ——–

OFF GRADE = quality lower than Hawaii No. 3. Use of the term “Hawaii” in conjunction with the term “Off grade” is prohibited.

* Tolerance for Type 2 beans is 10% by weight. No more than 3% other sizes.

** Defects are scored as either full imperfections or less than full imperfections, per 300 grams. Less than full imperfections are scored as 1/5 of a full imperfection.

*** Use of the term “Hamakua”, “Kau”, “Kauai, “Kona”, “Maui, “Molokai”, or “Oahu” in conjunction with the term “No. 3” or “Off Grade” is prohibited.
For a comprehensive summary of Hawaii’s green coffee standards, please refer to this chart. For a complete written description, please refer to HAR Chapter 4-143.