Coffee Drinker, Safeway Settle Kona Coffee Lawsuit

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HONOLULU (AP) - Safeway Inc. and a California coffee drinker have agreed to settle a lawsuit claiming Safeway committed fraud by selling coffee labeled as a Kona blend even though it didn't include much Kona coffee.

Court documents show Chanee Thurston, of Benicia, Calif. and Safeway settled the case on March 21. Thurston's attorney says settlement terms are confidential.

Thurston filed the lawsuit in federal court in Northern California two years ago, accusing the supermarket of false and misleading labeling. Safeway argued its labels clearly indicated the coffee was a blend that mixed different types of beans.

Kona Coffee Farmer Association board member Bruce Corker said Monday the settlement is disappointing. The association had hoped the court would address the legality of selling coffee that's primarily not from Kona as a "Kona blend.

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