Farm to table comes alive with O'ahu Fresh

Published On: Jun 13 2013 07:37:14 PM HST
HAU`ULA, Hawaii -

Imagine getting fresh Hau'ula tomatoes, Nalo greens and Kahuku eggplant every week without leaving your home.

Some local entrepreneurs are making it easier to eat local by bringing farm fresh produce to your door -- literally.

At Green Growers farm on the North Shore, you can find lush baby bok choi and French beans, but farmer Terry Shintaku is known for his Hau'ula tomatoes.

"Green onions grow really well in this weather, and so we'll have more of that and tomatoes.  We have a lot of tomatoes this time of year," said Shintaku.

In a span of just two days, these vine-ripened tomatoes could make it to your kitchen table with the help of O'ahu Fresh.

"How can we make it as easy as possible for people to appreciate local produce?" asked Matt Johnson, co-owner of O'ahu Fresh.  "And that's where we came up with the idea of delivering it to homes and offices."

For $20 a week, O'ahu Fresh puts together a bag of different produce from half a dozen farmers across the island and personally delivers it to you.

"We put what's in the bag depending on what we're hearing from the farmers and depending on availability, so we are mixing up the bag each week," said Johnson.

Most of the fruits and vegetables in the bag are common.

"This week, we have hydroponic lettuce.  This is from a farm in Waimanalo," said O'ahu Fresh co-owner Lisa Zeman.  "String beans and radishes -- these are both from a farmer out in Kunia."

But, every once in a while comes a product which may be a bit unique.

"We've got green eggplants here.  These are from Ho Farms," said Zeman.  "These are a different variety of eggplant.  Most people are familiar with the Thai or the Italian rounds, but these are really mild and go really well with curry."

When Johnson and his partner Zeman started the company three years ago, they only had five customers and now have 120.  The farm to door is a new concept on Oahu and growing in popularity with local farmers.

"I love it.  It's the perfect way to get our tomatoes to our customers," said Shintaku.  "They are fresh.  There's not a whole lot of handling in between."

O'ahu Fresh mainly delivers in the Honolulu area, but does special drop-offs as well.

Click here to sign up for the service.


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