Maui Jelly Factory

By ECommerce Admin
on December 18, 2014
With 0 comments

"Quality gourmet foods, freshly made in Maui from the finest local ingredients"

- Maui Jelly Factory


Maui Jelly Factory

Our newest arrival, my new favorite!

This family owned and operated business provides Maui with the finest tropical fruit delicacies, candies, and salad dressings. 

Also, including healthy alternative products such as, low cholesterol or low sugar!  And other great options! 


The Fresh Tropical Taste of Maui

Bring the taste of Maui home with you, and enjoy a tropical twist on your everyday meals! Growing up with these flavors, I can't imagine a life without it!

The syrups are delicious, the butters are ono, and the flavors are amazingly Hawaiian.

Many variations are infused with unique island flavors like coconut, mango, pineapple, guava, and lilikoi. 


Every bite will bring you back to the islands!

The salad dressings and sauces are palatably blended with Maui Sweet Onions, Papaya, Maui Cane Sugar and other island flavors that is sure to please your taste buds!


Oh Fudge !!

The fudge is AMAZING !! It is a must-have, must-try, must-buy !!! There are many tropical flavors to choose from like:

- Pineapple Coconut

- Maui Haupia

- Chocolate fudge


& there's more. The fresh creamy fudge comes in a handy 8 oz container you can enjoy by the spoonful :) 

Not to mention, beautifully wrapped chocolates that make wonderful gifts!

Check out the complete collection right here: Maui Jelly Factory Collection

- Samantha @ Maui Ocean Treasures

Maui Ocean Treasures' Annual Holiday Evening Event 2014!

By ECommerce Admin
on November 19, 2014
With 1 comments

Come join us for Maui Ocean Center's Annual Holiday Evening Event! 

This event is FREE and open to the public. We will have live entertainment from King Kekaulike High School Jazz Band and Tim Eleneki, fun holiday fare, drinks available for purchase at our Reef Café, and a door prize drawing! Each attendee will automatically receive 1 door prize entry for attending the event; however, if you bring a non-perishable food donation for the Maui Food Bank you will receive additional entries for the door prize (up to 5 additional entries).

The Hawaii Wildlife Fund will also be there to accept donations, and will receive part of the proceeds from the event. Our Maui Ocean Treasures gift shop will also be open, and for one night only we will be offering 30% off EVERYTHING in the store, excluding Pandora Jewelry. We will also have over 40 outside vendors set up in the various courtyards in the park to sell their gifts and goods - a great way to start off the holiday shopping season!

Please be advised that since the evening is focused on the live entertainment and vendor displays, the Aquarium exhibits and the rest of the park will be closed during the event.

Unable to make it? We're celebrating online as well! Starting on Friday, November 28th all the way through December 1st, all items in the Annual Holiday Sale 2014 collection will be discounted by 30% - Oh, and ALL ORDERS SHIP FOR FREE (NO MINIMUM AMOUNT)!

See you this weekend!


To browse the collection, head right over here:

Inside turtle nest sensors: Why sensing turtles is important

By ECommerce Admin
on October 16, 2014
With 0 comments

by: Jake Velasquez


Exactly two months after we started our fundraiser for Hawaii Wildlife Fund, we've hit our first massive milestone: With over $400 raised, we can finally purchase the very first TurtleSense Nest Sensor! To stay updated on our progress, check out the donation thermometer in our announcement post - It's updated daily! Over the past few weeks, we've had quite a few questions regarding exactly what the nest sensors are, what they look like, and why they're important. Now is the time to find out!

Why sensing turtles is important 

When they find out about our donations to Hawaii Wildlife Fund, the question most people ask first is, "Why?" 

According to NerdsWithoutBorders, the team behind the design and construction of the TurtleSense Nest Sensor, sea turtle populations have declined by as much as 95% in the past century due to human activity. Humans have polluted the ocean, destroyed habitats on land, and inadvertently captured sea turtles in trawling nets. Hawaii Wildlife Fund is working to rebuild sea turtle populations, and the most effective way of doing this is by protecting the extremely vulnerable hatchlings as they emerge from their sandy nests and crawl toward the breaking waves.

In order to do their job, volunteer groups and other personnel need to be present when the hatchlings emerge from the sand. The problem is that they do not know when this will happen: The sea turtles can hatch any time in a six week window, starting 50 days after the eggs are laid. When it occurs, all 100-150 hatchlings suddenly boil out of the sand in one mass and dash into the surf.

With today's technology (that is to say, volunteers with flashlights), the National Park Service is forced to rope off any nest sites discovered on the beach, and closely monitor them starting 50 days after the eggs are buried. Each nest site is guarded until the hatchlings emerge, or until 100 days have elapsed and the site is considered non-viable. Sectioning off a part of the beach for such a long stretch of time creates multiple problems, including conflicts with people ignorant of the issue who try to fight for "space" purely for recreational use, as well as issues relating to vehicular movement. Rarely mentioned is the scale of things: Sometimes there just are not enough people to monitor all of the sites.

Helping baby sea turtles, WITH SCIENCE!

The goal of TurtleSense is to build a device that removes the need of people patrolling nests and standing guard. This is done by building a sensor with the means to detect movement down in the nest, meaning the hatchlings are preparing to boil out, and a way for it to signal to the outside world so that personnel can come and assist the turtles as they eventually emerge.

The TurtleSense circuit board - This is cast in a ping pong ball mold and placed in the nest. 

All of the sensor designs and software code will be published online and available for use worldwide. The circuit board contains a microprocessor, an accelerometer capable of measuring movement in 3 axes (as well as gravity), and a transceiver chip. With this sensor, it's possible to change the timeframe spent monitoring turtles from 50 days to just a few days, saving potentially hundreds of labor hours.

The sensors themselves are the result of multiple revisions and strenuous testing. The current sensor is part of the team's Phase Two, and the result is a cutting-edge device capable of measuring multiple jolts per second, then sending out text messages alerting team members that a nest is getting ready to boil.

What's in a turtle sensor 

The entire TurtleSense project actually consists of two distinct pieces: The sensor assembly itself that lives in the nest, and the Communication Tower, which houses the battery pack, cell phone board, GPS antenna, and other hardware used to drive the sensor. 

The sensor assembly, cast in the white ball, senses jolt events from the surrounding hatchlings

The Comm Tower is built into a 3" PVC pipe and contains all the necessary hardware to power the sensor and communicate with the outside world

The sensor measures jolt results at a blinding speed, registering up to 400 events per second. From there, the data is sent to the sensor's processor, where the data is analyzed and used to build a profile. A new profile is built every 15 seconds to 6 minutes. Since it's not possible to beam data under wet, salty sand, the Comm Unit is built into a tall tube that projects up from the sand. The data received by the Unit is uploaded at least once per day, and as quickly as every hour. For power, the entire assembly is run off 8 rechargeable AA batteries, which is sufficient to run the unit for months. Since cellular communication uses the most power, the cellular module is only powered up for a few minutes each day. 

To track multiple sites, the team also built in GPS functionality and a hand-held receiver to test and register the sensors in the field. The receiver can verify the sensor is functional, check for proper cell phone reception, set time and date, and register the location of the sensor units via GPS. Due to its small size, the receivers can be carried by park personnel and used on daily beach walks. 

The hand-held receiver is the best way to test the sensors before final installation, as well as log their location via GPS

When a new nest is found, it's excavated and the eggs are counted. Then, the sensor is placed among the eggs, the receiver is attached and the location of the nest is registered, and the nest is carefully buried. The location of the sensor's cable end is marked with a stake. Later, the large Comm Unit, now sealed in a large PVC pipe and planted in a block of concrete for stability, is dug into the sand nearby and attached to the sensor. At this point, it's considered fully operational.

Great! It sounds like everything is good, so why do they need help?

Sensing turtles far in the future

The entire project is sponsored, and they rely on donations to fund everything. They are also deep in the initial testing phase. In the recent past, they've had the opportunity to do their first major hardware revision, which led to the Phase Two test cycle. That cycle was successful, and they're now preparing for Phase Three.

As NerdsWithoutBorders reports, success with TurtleSense could have widespread effect, "More effective international protection will be available, since the protection resources can be concentrated close to the hatch date instead of being stretched over six weeks. With a tighter hatching schedule, the public would have the opportunity to observe the hatchlings heading for the sea, an observation available only randomly now. This would improve the public support of the turtles. Much of the research on sea turtle eggs and hatchlings in the world could benefit from more accurate predictions of the hatch date. For example, studies that require capturing hatchlings for research could be done with much greater efficiency. Also, the sensor/cell network could be adapted for measurements of other species, including birds. Given its modest cost and energy efficiency (long battery life), it may have other uses in environmental studies."


All photos credit NerdsWithoutBorders

Maui Ocean Treasures is Saving Hawaii's Turtle Hatchlings!

By ECommerce Admin
on August 14, 2014
With 0 comments

­Aloha friends!

We’re extremely excited to break the news on the greatest project we've ever undertaken! Starting tomorrow, August 15th, 2014, 10% of ALL sales (excluding existing clearance items) will be donated to Hawaii Wildlife Fund, ending at the very end of the year, 12/31/14, or until we hit our goal of $4,000 (whichever comes first)!

That’s right, a full TEN PERCENT of the items sold here on the site will directly contribute to the protection of Hawaii’s most critically endangered turtles. Why are we doing this, you ask?


Hawai’i’s Hawksbill sea turtles are one of the most critically endangered turtle species in the world, with less than 150 nesting females thought to exist in the entire archipelago. Yet this rare and fascinating species receives little support for protection here. Their life cycle is under attack by light pollution, human development, recreational vehicles, feral cats, mongoose, and when they happen to cross seaside roads in search of prime nesting grounds… vehicle collisions. In addition, their ocean home is subjected to overfishing and pollution. The current picture is indeed fairly bleak: Human presence has directly contributed to this, and we feel it is our responsibility to do everything we can to correct it. We personally do not have the means to do this, so we wanted to reach out to those that are actively trying, year after year, to do everything in their power to help out.


Hawai’i Wildlife Fund has worked tirelessly since 1996 to protect sea turtle nesting and foraging habitat, guarding the mothers while they nest under cover of darkness, ensuring that the tiny hatchlings make it safely to the ocean after they emerge from their nests. Your Maui Ocean Treasures online purchases will provide desperately needed funds for research supplies and equipment that Hawai’i Wildlife Fund, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, will use to directly save hundreds of turtles’ lives.


Our goal is to raise $4,000 in order to purchase ten custom-designed nest sensors (which cost approximately $400 each) that monitor hatchling movement within the nest. This awesome new technology will automatically broadcast alerts via text messages when the hatchlings are preparing to emerge from the nest, saving valuable time and effort during nest campouts, and ensuring that Hawai’i Wildlife Fund will be there to protect each hatchling when they boil up from the sand. The sensors are cutting-edge technology, currently being developed by a small, yet fiercely dedicated, team of talented people. The first design of the sensors yielded extremely promising data, and the second phase has only served to improve on this.

Please join us as we work to help save one of Hawai’i’s most graceful animals. With your help, we may be able to bring these turtles back from the brink of extinction!

Watch this space: We'll be tracking our progress right here, as well as on our Facebook page at


UPDATE 08/20 - While we really appreciate all of the support we've seen over the past few days, we fully understand that some may want to skip our humble store and donate directly to HWF. We've added an easy-to-use button to do just that!

Paia HI 96779


HAWAI'I WILDLIFE FUND (HWF) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of Hawaii's native wildlife through research, education and advocacy. The HWF team consists of educators, conservationists, researchers, naturalists, communities, volunteers, and donors devoted to the protection of Hawaii's fragile marine ecosystem and inhabitants. Our community-based style of management brings a variety of experiences together to serve a common goal. For more information, their website is

An Interview With Jeff Albrecht

By ECommerce Admin
on June 28, 2014
With 0 comments

Jeff Albrecht's work has been featured across the world, and is collected by professional athletes, Hollywood actors, restaurants, hotels, corporations, government agencies, and private collectors everywhere. Today, he took a break from his live show here at Maui Ocean Treasures to answer the questions I had been constantly raining on his head.

Read more »

Christopher Radko - A Legendary Creator of Glass Ornaments

By ECommerce Admin
on June 11, 2014
With 0 comments

To celebrate the story of Christopher Radko, we're reducing our entire collection of beautiful glass ornaments by 40% - The discount is good until we run out, so click the link now before they're all gone! SHOP THE RADKO COLLECTION



In 1984, the 14-foot tall Christmas tree in the Radko household collapsed, and more than 1,000 priceless, vintage, mouth-blown glass ornaments were destroyed.


Christopher Radko began what eventually became a life-altering search to replace the heirloom ornaments. Starting in his home city of New York, the search was fruitless. Everywhere he searched, he could not find a single ornament approaching the quality of his vintage pieces. Later, while visiting family in Poland, he decided that the only way he would replace what was lost was to recreate them all. Working with a Polish glassblower, Christopher sketched designs for the broken ornaments, and what was thought to be lost forever was made new again.


In 1985, Christopher Radko designed and produced sixty Christmas ornaments, and launched a company that would become legend. In 2010, Christopher Radko celebrated its 25th anniversary in designing and producing only the finest in glass Christmas tree ornaments. With over fifteen million glass ornaments in ten thousand unique designs produced, the number of Christmas ornaments in each Radko collection increases each year. More impressive than the growth of the sales of size of the Christopher Radko collection of holiday ornaments and decor is the continued commitment to tradition and quality.


The production process has not changed over the past quarter of a century, and it is outlined in general below:

1. The ornament is hand-blown in a special mold.

2. After blowing, the ornament is lined with silver.

3. Following lining, the matte base coat is painted.

4. The second coat of paint contains all of the general coloring details.

5. The third coat consists of all the fine color details.

6. Now fully painted, the special finishing touches, like glitter, are added.

7. The ornament is inspected and crowned.


Today, Radko creations are still made in Poland, but are also made in Italy, the Czech Republic, and Germany. The total time needed to create a Christopher Radko ornament takes more than a week and is still largely performed by a team of skilled artists, and many have been with Christopher Radko since the very beginning. Each year a new collection of Christopher Radko Charity Ornaments is specifically designed to support numerous different charity causes. With the introduction of the first Christopher Radko Charity Awareness ornament for AIDS research released in 1992, these Radko Charity ornaments have served as a way for Radko to give back and create charity awareness. The current Christopher Radko Charity Awareness ornaments include: Breast Cancer, Pediatric Cancer, AIDS, Diabetes, Animal Charities, Heart Disease and Alzheimer's, to name just a few. These special charity ornaments have raised millions of dollars for research and awareness funding to help charity causes.

Amazing Jewelry Made On Maui - Coleen d'Avignon Comes to Visit!

By ECommerce Admin
on May 12, 2014
With 1 comments

"I have been collecting d'Avignon jewelry for years and always look forward to her newest designs. She has the gift of expressing the Aloha spirit in her inspired pieces, and even though I am back on the mainland I always feel the magic of Hawai'i when I wear her creations"

 - Anne Emerson


We are all extremely excited to feature a local jewelry artist as skilled as Coleen. Even with her schedule, she made time to stop by and humor me by answering all of my questions!

How long have you been making jewelry?

I started beading in 1988. I would make leather bags and extensive loom work. Specifically, I've been making the Kumihimo (woven beaded jewelry) since I moved here, in 2004.

What made you move to Maui?

When I was 17, I visited Kaneohe in Oahu. After visiting, it became my lifelong dream to move to Hawaii. In 2004, we sold everything we had, including the house with everything inside, and moved here.

How did you get involved in jewelry making?

I had to stop doing the leather work due to my carpal tunnel. It was getting so bad, I wasn't sure how much longer I could keep going. One day, my girlfriend showed me a piece of jewelry, and I thought to myself, “I can do that!” I wanted to take a combination of things; gemstones, beads, all those colors, and make something beautiful. I've always been making things by hand, so the jewelry was just a natural extension of myself.

Where do you get the inspiration for your pieces?

From the stones! My whole studio is color: Colored beads, colored gemstones. So when I pick out one piece for the focus, everything else around it just screams, “Pick me, pick me!” With the Kumihimo, that’s more about putting colors together that you never thought would work. That’s why my items are popular: One necklace of mine can easily go with six or seven different outfits. Depending on what you wear, it brings out different parts of the necklace.

What is your favorite gem to work with?

Oh, geez… Wow… I guess... Labradorite. Or Moonstone. They have a natural sparkle; the color just shifts in the light. There’s always something different that you didn't notice.

Have you ever experimented with designs far outside of your usual work?

Always. Luckily, it works out. That’s what art is! 

How long does it usually take to create a set of earrings? A necklace?

It depends on the piece. I did one in 14k Gold with Sapphires that took me a week. It depends on the materials, and the detail. I’m not capable of setting down a project and doing something else. Once I start on something, I have to finish it. With the way the stones inspire me, if I set it down and try to come back later, the spark is gone. Everything affects the rest – Because the necklaces are woven from 8 different strands, it’s almost as if I’m making 8 necklaces at once. So depending on what the strand contains, it has to be longer or shorter than the others. It’s a math problem. Nothing about them is perfect, but you have to have a sense of placement to understand how the stones will lie in the end.

Where do you source your gems from?

All over the world! A large amount comes from the United States, and I love visiting the shows on the Mainland, but there’s also India, Hong Kong, and Morocco, to name just a few.

Are there any misconceptions regarding either your gems or designs you’d want to dispel?

Just that every piece truly is one-of-a-kind. It’s not just assemblage: Each piece has its own spark. The styles may be similar, but the pieces are never the same. Even if I tried, I could not duplicate any of my previous pieces. There’s also a lot of finer attention to detail than most people realize. Take the earrings, for instance: They have to be a mirror image. You can’t have two rights. A lot of people don’t really pay attention to the imaging. Unfortunately, my biggest competition is with the Imports. It’s not just the sheer volume flooding the market, it’s the cost. It’s still worth it, though. It’s an honor to be recognized as an artist. I've done shows at the Hui No’eau [ed note: to quote their website, “Hui No'eau Visual Arts Center is a nonprofit, non-degree granting, community based visual arts education organization offering open access to quality arts instruction by teaching artists” – you can find out more here]. I've even been selected as an exhibitor for Art Maui, the biggest art show on the island.

What are you doing on your downtime?

Buying stones! I’m always shopping for more gemstones. I also love to read. I love to hang out with my father, who literally just turned 101.

I heard that you have a menagerie of pets. Is that true?

Yes! I have a Myna bird, which literally never stops talking; there are the two little ankle-biter dogs, both half-Cavalier. One is Shih Tzu-Cavalier, the other Cavalier-Poodle. I also have a goldfish. Does the husband count?

The History of Hawaiian Coffee

By ECommerce Admin
on April 28, 2014
With 0 comments

UPDATE 6/5/14 - We have received a digital copy of the booklet! If you'd like your own copy of this fascinating publication, complete with plenty of full color pictures, click here! The History of Coffee Cultivation in Hawaii 1813-2013 (0.98MB PDF)

The following are excerpts from a very small yet important pamphlet titled The History of Coffee Cultivation in Hawaii 1813-2013, written by Nicholas N. I. Goodness and Todd Scantlebury, and published by the Maui Coffee Association. The pamphlet in its entirety is not online as far as we know, but we’ve received permission to post our favorite parts. There have been some minor changes to the body of the text for punctuation, grammar and readability reasons.

Hawaii is the only state in the union that grows commercial coffee, and it took enterprising immigrants to recognize that the lush vertical landscape of the tropical isles was perfect for growing Coffea’s (the genus classifying coffee trees) red cherry. From Africa to Arabia; through Indonesia, India and Italy, and finally on to the Americas and Hawaii, the coffee bean traveled for hundreds of years to find its home in Hawaii.

It’s not surprising that coffee was able to become established here with relative ease, and in a variety of ecological niches. There exist a handful of relatives which are native and/or endemic to Hawaii. These, like coffee, are plants in the family Rubiaceace, primarily of the genus Coprosma sp. The Hawaiians had names for some of these, such as “Pilo” or “Kukaenene.” When the small yellow to reddish fruit of the Pilo is cut open, one finds a small hard center drupe which looks exactly like a coffee bean. The coffees of Hawaii; Maui, the Big Island, Molokai, Oahu, and Kauai, reflect the differences and diverse environments that give each of them unique flavors. It has been a long process getting the industry to the point it is today. Undoubtedly, as new localities and cultivars merge into the stream of coffee production, they will reflect the richness of nuance which is the essence of the Hawaiian coffee experience.

What follows is a short history of what has gone into establishing the present day industry.

Though there is ongoing discussion as to the precise date when coffee was first planted in Hawaii, the first mention of the introduction of coffee plants to Hawaii is that of the Spanish physician and advisor to King Kamehameha – Don Francisco de Paula y Marin – with the first plantings in 1813. An avid gardener, Don Marin is also credited with planting Hawaii’s first pineapples.

Tradition speaks of him setting out plants in Manoa, one of the huge amphitheater valleys back of Honolulu. Apparently, by the 1820s, none of these plants had survived, prompting Boki, then Governor of Oahu, to encourage a coffee planter from Jamaica, whom the Governor had met during a trip to England, to import more plants into Hawaii, and to start a platation on Oahu to produce sugar, coffee, and a distillery for the manufacture of rum.

In May 1825, the HMS Blonde arrived in Honolulu with the bodies of the late king and queen of Hawaii. Aboard were [sic] the botanist James Macrae and the naturalist Andrew Bloxam, and perhaps the largest collection of plants to be introduced into Hawaii up to that time. The coffee plants were delivered to gardener John Wilkinson, who planted them in the Manoa Valley on Oahu. A short time later, Wilkinson died and the coffee plantings, which were nearing harvest, suffered neglect. However, production of sugar and rum in Manoa Valley continued.

At about the same time, Richard Charlton, the British Consul at Honolulu, imported coffee plants from Manila. They, too, were planted in upper Manoa Valley, [but the] exact date is uncertain. Later, slips from these original plantings were set out in Kalihi as well as in Niu Valleys, on the leeward coast of the island of Oahu. Subsequently, in the years 1828 through 1829, coffee was started at Kona, Kamakua, and Hilo, on the Big Island of Hawaii by missionaries traveling to those areas from Honolulu. Thus, the “seeds” of the internationally renowned Kona coffee industry were sown from the island of Oahu.

William Hooper reported “planting and fencing” 5000 coffee trees at Koloa, on the island of Kauai, in 1835. By 1845, coffee and sugar were export staples of the Kingdom of Hawaii. Soon, coffee was needed to fuel the California and Oregon Gold Rush, and Hawaii’s coffee future was indeed looking bright. However, arriving at that future was to prove a difficult journey.

At Hanalei, there were two large plantations with “extensive” plantings which were begun in 1854, license by Kamehameha IV. All of these fields produced good yields for a short time, but they were all planted at elevations which may have stressed the cultivar, and in the mid-1850s, all of the lower elevation Hawaiian plantings were devastated by a scale insect [referred to as] “Blight,” and by 1857, all of the former coffee plantings on Kauai had been converted to sugar production. Despite the setbacks, early growers learned that coffee planted at the 1000-foot elevation and higher tended to grow and resist disease better. In Kona, the elevation, soil and climate was found to produce some of the [best] beans in the world. The coffee was said to have “an invigorating chocolate flavor” equal to celebrated “mocha” coffee, named after its delivery port of Mocha (Mokha) in Yemen. A boom in coffee prices in the 1890s brought many growers, speculation, more acreage and farming refinements. Herman Widemann, a German immigrant who first settled in Kauai, brought Guatemalan beans to the islands that increased production, along with nurseries for the new stock.

In 1902, Charles and Luika Gay purchased most of the fee-simple land on Lanai and put their energies in cattle ranching and limited agriculture; with a focus on watermelon and pineapple crops and beehives for honey, they also experimented with coffee cultivation. By World War I, coffee plantings were either converted to sugar, pineapple or abandoned, with […] the Big Island [as the exception]. On the island of Hawaii, the largest plantations eventually succumbed to the realities of economics, and were parceled off as smaller plots.

Hawaii Coffee Today

Kona and the other regions of the Big Island have produced coffee continuously since the early 1800s and support nearly 600 independent farms. Farms average 3 acres and only a few have 50 or more acres, including some producing coffee organically. Total Big Island coffee acreage is more than 2,000 acres, producing more than 2 million pounds in most years.

Maui has more than 50 coffee farms and 500 acres in production, with more being added every year. There are large-scale commercial farms and many smaller coffee estates spanning from Kaanapali to the slopes of Haleakala and Hana. Several are producing coffee organically.

Molokai has one 500-acre coffee farm in the village of Kalapu’u.

Oahu has more than 100 acres of coffee in Wahiawa and Waialua.

Kaua’i has the largest coffee orchard in Hawaii and in the United States, with 3,100 acres in production. There are also several small estate farms on the Garden Isle.


In 1995, growers from throughout Hawaii’s coffee islands banded together to form the Hawaii Coffee Association, dedicated to education, research, and high production standards. Today, Hawaiian coffees are known for their delicate and well-balanced taste, rich aroma, and clean finish. With just under 800 farms and approximately 6,300 acres in production today, Hawaii ranks among the smallest coffee production areas in the world. Yet Hawaiian coffee consistently ranks in the top ten coffees of the world, year after year. This is no small feat; after pretroleum, coffee is the second most heavily-traded commodity in the world. In the 2010 crop year, state-wide “green” bean production stood at 7.9 Million pounds, representing approximately $26 Million in sales in parchment, or $260 Million retail, making Hawaii coffee one of the state’s most valuable crops.


So, before you take your next sip of Hawaii coffee, stop and thank the first botanists, early entrepreneurial farmers, and today’s hard-working growers. They brought you that delicate and delicious Hawaiian coffee bean.

Beekeeping, Maui Style!

By ECommerce Admin
on April 18, 2014
With 0 comments

Honey is something that we all love, but rarely  do we think about where it comes from. We often see the little guys buzzing around to and fro from flower to flower, but it’s a rare sight to actually get up close with a living, breathing hive.

This week, we had a lucky visit from one of our local beekeepers, Sam Lareau of Hawaii Natural Products, and I managed to drag him away from the others long enough to get some info on being a Maui Apiarist. He showed us that honey, carefully harvested locally, packs a flavor orders of magnitude greater than anything you’d find in a grocery store in a little plastic bear. After tasting it myself, I was hooked. Always approachable and friendly, Sam is extremely passionate about his bees, and he loves sharing his knowledge. For instance: Did you know that Maui County is the last place in the United States where honeybee hives are free of the (often lethal to a honeybee hive) Varroa mite? I sure didn’t! Here are a few other questions I posed to him.


Tell us your story! How did you first become interested in working with bees?

“I’ve always loved bees - with my Noni farm, we placed a couple of hives on the farm to help with Noni production. The guy who got me into beekeeping, now my partner, is a second generation beekeeper.  The first couple of hives were on the farm almost from the beginning, nearly 10 or 12 years ago. We started multiplying the numbers 4 or 5 years ago. Every farm should have a couple of hives, I think.”

What are your goals for the future?

“Our main goal is to maintain (Maui’s) healthy bee population. It’s all about keeping the hives strong and bees healthy. That’s our #1 priority above all else.”

Why should we choose Maui honey over honey from other places?

“We’re the last place in the US where the bees are Varroa mite-free. We don’t do any spraying on our hives whatsoever. We make sure our hives are in remote locations to ensure our honey is the purest and healthiest possible.”

Have you noticed your bees preferring certain areas of the island over others?

“I’ve heard some beekeepers complain that on the wet (Rainforest) side of the island (Hana, etc.), their bees don’t do too well. It really depends on the season, too. You could be moving them around when certain things are in bloom. Every side of the island has a harvest season, and I think they do well everywhere.”

I’ve noticed another honey produced here in Hawaii is white in color. Why is that?

“The color of the honey depends on what type of plants and trees the bees harvested from. The white one is from the pollen of the Lehua flower. The color of the honey is directly impacted from what the bees harvest. The specific reason why the Lehua honey is white is because of the sugar content – a higher sugar content causes the honey to crystallize, which lightens the color of the honey.”

What kind of problems do you encounter while raising bees here in Maui?

“Our main problem is the Hive Beetle, and that’s the only real problem. They get into the hive, cause a ruckus, and nest into the comb. They breed and multiply and actually slow the whole hive down. It causes a lot more work for the bees for clean-up, but it’s not a life threat to the bees.”

Is storing honey easy? What kind of precautions do you have to take?

“No real precautions, honey just does not go bad. Just make sure that you don’t contaminate it with anything else.”

Does honey have a lot of health benefits?

“It’s a strong anti-bacterial and anti-fungal, and honey from a local source is great for allergies. It’s been used for generations for things like sore throat; just put a bit of raw honey in milk and it helps.”

Have you ever put honeycomb in a jar before you fill it with honey?

“To do that, you have to take a bit of the comb away from the bees. We can do that if the bees overbuild or it’s overflowing, but we never take away comb from the bees purposefully because it adds additional labor for them.”

At this point, I had to set Sam free. During a separate conversation, I learned a whole lot more, as well. Things like how the average hive contains anywhere from 20,000 to 60,000 bees and produces between 25 to 50 lbs of honey per year. Or how more than a  third of the fresh produce we consume has been pollinated by honeybees. I quickly learned that the honeybee is a lot more complex than I ever imagined, and if Sam could stay all day, he readily would.


     - Jake Velasquez


If you want to try the incredible honey Sam showed us, it’s available in our store here!

He Puke No Na Pepe - Hawaii Baby Book

By ECommerce Admin
on April 11, 2014
With 0 comments


Created by a pair of childhood friends, this book is honestly in a league of its own. While browsing the library, the cover artwork catches the eye. It's simple, but not plain. When I picked it up, I was surprised by the rough, 3D texture of the cover. Upon opening it, I discovered the pages are similar in feeling. The book is made from 100% recycled materials, and the choice to use a parchment-esque paper results in an extremely pleasurable experience when you flip through the pages.


I don't personally have children, so while I found the book on its own extremely interesting, I decided to ask real mothers and grandmothers what they thought of this neat tome.

"I wish I had it when my kids were babies. What an awesome baby shower gift!" - Anonymous Tutu, Retail Store Stock Room

"What an awesome way to remember your keiki's firsts and be environmentally conscience at the same time!" - Kim, Sales Lead


After showing the baby book to Kim, I headed out to the front of the park to try and get more opinions. After all, isn't it rare to find something universally praised?


"I want one for my own grandkids!" - Beverly, Front Gate Cashier

"I think it's a great way to track genealogy - a book you can give to your own daughter when the time comes" - Ruby, Front Gate Cashier


Now that's something that hadn't occurred to me. The book's design really is a classic and understated theme, and it would certainly be possible for the next generation to use a copy of the book for their own child. One would find it inspiring to have a daughter, now pregnant with her first child, building her own baby book after growing up seeing the one her mother made.

Book back under arm, I headed back into the store. I didn't make it too far before I found another opportunity for additional insight.


"Having something like this is a great way to reminisce with the grandchildren - show them how they resembled their parents. Often times I've shown my own grandchildren pictures of their parents and they really did think it was themselves in the picture. It's so nice how they have the Hawaiian words. Today's Hawaiian generation has begun to learn more of their natural language (Hawaiian), and this book is an excellent teaching tool." - Maria, Jewelry


It's true: The book is packed with Hawaiian phrases, and the titles of the various chapters all contain direct Hawaiian translations. It includes explanations of ancient Hawaiian traditions regarding childbirth, and honestly does its best to respect the culture.


If you've found yourself as interested in this baby book as I am, you can see more of it in the store right here!

And if you'd like to see the rest of our library, you can find the entire collection here.


 - Jake, eCommerce Coordinator



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