Just because coffee grows on trees doesn’t mean that gourmet coffee is easy to make! Freshly picked Ka‘anapali coffee cherries are processed in many stages, using modern technology and decades of experience to turn the colorful berries into ready-to-roast beans.

There are two main genuses of coffee plants: Coffea robusta and Coffea arabica. Most of the world’s coffee, and all specialty coffees, are arabica. All of the varieties grown in Ka‘anapali are arabica. Once planted, coffee trees will flower in their third year, assuming a good growing environment. Six months after flowers are pollinated, the trees will produce fruit. Coffee plants remain in production for many years – some are over 100 years old.

MauiGrown coffee plants are harvested for their cherries once a year, starting around September. A machine designed for coffee harvesting shakes the branches to release the fruit, this is called mechanical harvesting. 

The cherries are wet processed, using water to remove the fruit from the seeds, or “beans,” resulting in a clean, vibrant taste. The beans are dried in mechanical dryers to ensure even drying. Green beans are then sorted and bagged in 100-pound burlap sacks, ready for roasting.