By Lia Blanchard
We love our coffee! Over half of the adult American population drinks coffee daily, although some regions drink more than others. Which ones? View a gallery of the 20 Most Caffeinated Cities in America to find out. Across the country, coffee is found in candy and baked goods, and coffee-themed gifts – from mugs and machines to gift baskets – are year-round favorites.
Although more coffee is consumed in the United States than any other country – about one-third of total coffee production worldwide – the only place coffee is grown in the US is in the state of Hawaii. Most well-known is Kona coffee, grown only in the Kona district of the Big Island of Hawaii. Kona coffee is considered a premium variety, commanding prices that are some of the highest in the world.
Kona coffee is harvested by hand-picking the fruit of the coffee trees several times between September and January. Each red fruit – called a cherry – has 1-2 coffee beans inside, depending on the type. The highest quality of beans come from cherries producing two beans that are flat on one side. One step down in quality are cherries that produce just one round bean each, called a peaberry.
What is a “Kona blend”?
A Kona blend is a coffee that is comprised of a minimum of 10% Kona coffee and 90% foreign beans. Anything containing less than 10% Kona coffee cannot use the word “Kona” in its labeling. Because of the expense, most blends do not contain more than the minimum 10%. Only coffees labeled “100% Kona Coffee” are considered by the state of Hawaii to be authentic.
Did you know?
The US consumes the most coffee in the world, but we don’t even make the top five when coffee consumption is considered per capita – the Nordic countries have a monopoly! See which country consumes the most coffee per person here.
Are you one of the American majority, drinking an average of three 9-ounce cups (with cream and sugar) in the morning?