Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival to Debut Maui-Grown Mahi Pono Potatoes - Hawaii Food & Wine Festival


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Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival to Debut Maui-Grown Mahi Pono Potatoes

Mahi Pono to pre-harvest 40 pounds of potato crops for Maui HFWF events


HONOLULU, HI (October 17, 2019)— At the heart of Hawaiʻi Food & Wine Festival is its strong support for local agriculture and this weekend it will debut Maui heirloom potatoes grown by Mahi Pono, LLC with three of its celebrity chefs featuring red and yellow potatoes in their dishes.


Mahi Pono, LLC, a new local farming company, announced the planting of their red and yellow potato crops on approximately 40-acres of land in August. Today, Mahi Pono, located in the Central Maui, will pre-harvest 40 pounds of potatoes for HFWF guests who will have the first chance to taste of these potatoes.


“We are excited that these esteemed chefs will have the first opportunity to cook, taste and work with our potatoes,” said Shan Tsutsui, senior vice president of operations from Mahi Pono. “Our team has been working hard to transition former sugarcane land into diversified agriculture in Central Maui that will increase local food production and help achieve food security on Maui, and our state.”


Guests at Saturday’s Wicked Cocktails, Wicked Plates grand tasting event on October 19 at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa will be the first to taste Mahi Pono’s Maui-grown potatoes prepared by Chef Spike Mendelsohn, of Vim & Victor in Springfield, Virginia, and The Mill House’s executive chef, Taylor Ponte, from Wailuku.


On Sunday, October 20, attendees at the six-course Pasta La Vista dinner at Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa will also preview the Mahi Pono potatoes prepared by the famed Italian chef, Celestino Drago, of Drago Centro in Los Angeles, California.


“Agriculture and sustainability have always been priorities for Hawaii Food & Wine Festival,” said Roy Yamaguchi, chef and co-chair of HFWF. “Now in our ninth year, the festival continues to encourage local and visiting chefs to use Hawai‘i products sourced by farmers, fishermen and purveyors to gain an understanding of our land and resources. We want to continue to cultivate the love for our land and its products through partnerships like this one with Mahi Pono.”


Mahi Pono has returned active agriculture back to Central Maui, with the goal of increasing local food production. The first 40-acres of potatoes are scheduled to be harvested in November 2019, followed by a planting and harvesting rotation of approximately 10-acres at a time.


Learn more at MahiPono.com and stay connected with the Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival via www.HFWF.me. Tickets for the 2019 Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival, including Pasta La Vista and Life’s a Beach are on sale now.



The Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival is the premier epicurean destination event in the Pacific. The Festival features a roster of more than 100 internationally renowned master chefs, culinary personalities, and wine and spirit producers. Co-founded by two of Hawai‘i’s own James Beard Award-winning chefs, Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong, the Festival will showcase wine tastings, cooking demonstrations, one-of-a-kind excursions, and exclusive dining opportunities with dishes highlighting the state’s bounty of local produce, seafood, beef and poultry. Proceeds support local beneficiaries committed to sustainability and cultural and educational programs in Hawai‘i.



Mahi Pono is a local Maui farming company that owns and operates approximately 41,000 acres agricultural land in Central Maui. It was created in 2018 in a joint venture between Pomona Farming LLC, a California-based agricultural group, and the Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments), one of Canada’s largest pension investment managers. Mahi Pono is committed to practicing sustainable agriculture, to growing food for local consumption, to the responsible use of natural resources, and to providing high quality agricultural employment. For more information, visit MahiPono.com.