I continue to be fascinated by the food scene in Maui. To live on an island so far away from any mainland would be such a challenge for a food supply.
But I am also struck by the sense of community this island has, it is so much stronger than anywhere I have seen. Today I visited the Roselani ice cream factory. It’s a third generation business with 4 brothers and the one sister, Cathy Nobriga Kim who is now the ice cream maker.
In the last 1800s it started as a soda water company that delivered ice by horse and buggy in the plantation community as no one had a refrigerator at home.
In 1932 Roselani moved into the ice cream business and now focuses on tropical flavours, like my favourite – haupia. During the tour we learned about making ice cream and the challenge of finding local vendors but what struck me most was their outreach to the community. Like many companies they sponsor schools and events in the community but they took it one step further.
Cathy was diagnosed early with breast cancer but learned there was a growing trend of women on the islands catching it at stage four, when it was too late. Alarmed by the trend she created a pink flavour, Aloha Cherry Truffle, to bring awareness to annual mammograms and raised funds for women who could not afford it.
It seems like such a little thing to do for any other company but the factory is a tiny operation, to throw in another flavour would be a massive undertaking but Cathy didn’t seem concerned with the logistics, only what good it could bring to her community.