A climate for coffee: Researchers work to get ahead of potential threats to Hawaii’s signature crop

Coffee cherry grows at the Kona Coffee Living History Farm in Captain Cook. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today file)

Alex Kempton picks coffee at Rancho Aloha in Holualoa. (Photos by Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today file )

Green Kona Coffee cherry grows in the Coffee Belt. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today file)

Kona Coffee Cherry grows in the coffee belt. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

Coffee is picked at Ueshima Coffee Farm in Holualoa.

Gary Strawn shows ripe coffee cherry at his Kona Earth Coffee Farm in Holualoa for the Kona Coffee Festival farm tour.

KAILUA-KONA — Climate change poses a viable threat to coffee production around the world, yet Hawaii appears more immune to its impacts than most other coffee-heavy regions — at least for now.