First Place Winners: Māla Kaluʻulu
Team Members: Dana Shapiro, Noa Kekuewa Lincoln and Mailani Souza
Parcel: Kona – Keʻei

Business Plan:
Mala Kaluʻulu, Inc. is a Hawaiʻi cooperative business comprised of three members, with plans to engage in holistic agricultural production, research and education. Their business model will focus on two primary crops, ʻulu (breadfruit) and ʻolena (turmeric). With a desire to plant a wider variety of crop sub-species for year round production, Mala Kaluʻulu will cultivate the 3.7-acre Keʻei parcel in South Kona on Hawaiʻi island.

Primary plans include active restoration of traditional kaluʻulu, a Hawaiian agroforestry system with an ʻulu canopy and various understory crops. The diverse secondary kaluʻulu crops include kukui (candlenut) and ʻohia ʻai (mountain apple) canopy, and understory crops such as maiʻa (banana), pia (arrowroot), noni, wauke (paper mulberry), ʻuala (sweet potato), ʻawa and ʻawapuhi (shampoo ginger).

Mala Kaluʻulu plans to help advance the understanding of innovative farming principles developed by early Hawaiians, and these principles will be applied to contemporary agriculture. Eventually, Mala Kaluʻulu would like to create new opportunities for cultural and agricultural education, through its role as both a working commercial farm and “outdoor classroom” for research and education.

2nd Place Winners: Counter Culture Foods
Team Members: Jay Bost and Rob Barreca
Parcel: North Shore – Paʻalaʻa

Business Plan:
Counter Culture Foods (CCF) is a seasonal seed-to-countertop fermented foods producer concept planned to be based on 5-acres in Paʻalaʻa.

The team of two will grow the following crops for kimchi: ʻawapuhi, ʻolena, chayote, chili pepper, daikon, green papaya, bulb onion, koba green onion, purple cabbage, shallot and wonbok; and the following crops for tempeh: adzuki bean, cowpea, millet, pigeonpea, sorghum and soybean.

Their operation will be to grow the produce on KS’ lands and process it into locally produced fermented foods, such as kimchi (spicy green papaya) and tempeh (adzuki bean). CCF grows the majority of their own ingredients using organic and regenerative agricultural practices. They would like to engage with the community through workshops.

Tapping into this increasing demand for fermented foods, CCF plans to offer raw, probiotic kimchi and tempeh as their flagship products.

2015 Mahiʻai Match-Up Winners

Mahiʻai Matchup from Oiwi TV.

2014 Mahiʻai Match-Up Winners

Key Dates

Aug. 1, 2017: Registration Opens
Sept. 1, 2017: Registration & Business Plan Summary Deadline
Sept. 15, 2017: First Round of Finalists Notified
Oct. 2, 2017: Business Plans Deadline
Oct. 25, 2017: Presentation to Judges
Oct. 27, 2017: Finalists Notified
Nov. 1, 2017: Hawai‘i Food & Wine "Raw & Wild In the Tank" Event - Winners Announced

Application Checklist
  • Registration Form
  • Top Copy of Tenant Agreement (ROE, License and Lease)
  • Business Plan Summary
  • Financial Analysis

* Award monies will be distributed in accordance with the completion of their major milestones as identified in the business plan.