One of the best things about living on a tropical island are the unique holiday gift options. Hawaii Island is home to both locally grown and produced products and passionate farmers. Below are products created by Hawaii farmers and entrepreneurs who have gone the extra mile to ensure their products are sustainable and in many cases, organically farmed. The gift ideas below help small farmers, are good for you, good for the Earth and are seriously top notch and carry the special cache of coming from an island.
Natural Soap and Essential Oil Sprays
The Kona Natural Soap Company creates hand made, all natural, vegan soaps at their soap factory on a five-acre sustainable farm near Kona. The owners, Greg Colden and Marty Corrigan, grow Hawaiian cacao and coffee, which they also offer for sale separately, and mix them along with other natural ingredients into the bars of soaps they hand make weekly. They proudly use all natural essential oils for the soaps and have over a dozen different blends including cinnamon and chocolate, orange and lavender, and lemongrass, eucalyptus and oatmeal. Each bar is $6.50 and can be boxed separately or six can be put together for a beautiful gift in a hand made Mango wooden box for $55, which can hold three soaps. You can also order roasted cacao nibs, 100% estate grown Kona coffee, soap dishes, and essential oil sprays using Kukui nut oil. The sprays are excellent for sunburns, chafing, and dry skin. All of the products the Kona Natural Soap Company creates make thoughtful gifts for people who have skin sensitivities or seek all natural products. The good news is they will love you each time they lather up in the shower! Order at KonaNaturalSoapCompany.com (Here is a video of Greg discussing the soaps)
Dragon Fruit and Melange Honey
Tai Shan Farms, a Certified Naturally Grown Farm, is located on the slopes of Mauna Loa. The honey the farm produces is unique in that the hives are kept in the farm fields, concentrating on producing rare Dragon Fruit honey. “The fields are surrounded by an Ohia forest and when in bloom the bees produce a mix of the coveted delicate and sweet Lehua honey mixed with Dragon Fruit,” says owner, Malia McNabb. When the Ohia forest is no longer in bloom the bees then pollinate the coffee orchards. The roving bees provide Tai Shan Farms an array of tasty honey varieties including dragon fruit, lehua and coffee blossom. The owners have also crafted unique melange honeys- a blend of Dragon Fruit honey with one other ingredient; organic baby ginger, organic cinnamon, or organic dark chocolate cacao powder. You can get all three in a gift pack for only $12. Deeply tasty and perfect for your culinary friends! Order at http://www.taishanfarms.com.
Just in time for your favorite holiday treats is OceanFire Organic Cinnamon. Adaptations, an organic farm and co-op in Honaunau in South Kona is owned by Tane and Maureen Datta, the producers of this amazing spice. They grow and produce organic Ceylon cinnamon, or true cinnamon (versus cassia or Vietnamese cinnamon), which has a sweeter taste and aroma. The Datta’s grow the 20-year-old cinnamon trees on their farm. Tane harvests the branches, scrapes the bark to clean it and then uses a hammer to remove the bark. The harvested bark is dried and sent off for milling. The secret for more flavor? Milling the cinnamon finer, which trades in a longer shelf life, but provides a taste you won’t find anywhere else. You can purchase the cinnamon through their online supplier Hawaii Coffee Connection for $9.
Organic, Non-GMO Spices
Speaking of Hawaii Coffee Connection, they also carry Ka’iulani’s Spices, which are Hawaiian grown, organic, non-GMO spices. Ka’iulani, the owner, started selling her spices at Farmer’s Markets on Oahu. Her reason for creating these spices? “I want to make it fun to cook! I believe you can’t over spice using my spices. Blend them together, use them on meats and vegetables and enjoy!” You can buy these delectable spices individually or in the “spice rack” which includes Kona coffee rub, Herb Garden, Exotic Curry, Alaea Sea Salt and spicy Pele’s Fire. Each spice is $7.50 or the rack is $35.00. A nice gift for your friends and family that enjoy natural seasonings with a Taste of Aloha!