Breadfruit Harvest for Hunger

Feb 28, 2011 by Andrea Dean | Story Popularity: 6


Is your breadfruit going to waste, and if so, would you like to donate it to hungry families who want and appreciate it?

The Hawaii Homegrown Food Network is looking for a select number of landowners on Maui, O'ahu and Hawai'i Island with excess breadfruit. A two-person harvest team--expertly trained and equipped by the Breadfruit Institute of the National Tropical Botanical Garden--will harvest your breadfruit when it is at perfect maturity. The breadfruit, raw and processed, will be distributed to food insecure families who value breadfruit as a delicious and nutritious food. Landowners will retain a percentage of the fruit and have the satisfaction of knowing that breadfruit that would otherwise fall to the ground and go to waste will feed some of Hawai'i's hungry families.

Since the economic downturn of 2008, many families lack access to affordable and nutritious food. The Breadfruit Harvest for Hunger project directly addresses food security in Hawai'i by harvesting breadfruit that is not being utilized and distributing it to people who want and need it. In addition to the obvious social benefit of feeding the hungry in Hawai'i with a local resource that is currently going to waste, this project also explores the viability of breadfruit as a replacement for imported starches and compares it to other local and imported carbohydrate staples based on price and nutrient value delivered.

The Breadfruit Harvest for Hunger Project addresses food insecurity in Hawai'i by distributing excess breadfruit to those in need.

Breadfruit Harvest for Hunger is an initiative of Ho'oulu ka 'Ulu--a project to revitalize 'ulu (breadfruit) as an attractive, delicious, nutritious, abundant, affordable, and culturally appropriate food which addresses Hawai'i's food security issues. The Ho'oulu ka 'Ulu project is led by the Hawai'i Homegrown Food Network and the Breadfruit Institute of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. If you would like to be considered as a harvest site, please click here to fill out a simple interest form or email


Archived Comments

Comments posted prior to adopting Facebook comments.

  1. Olin Lagon says:

    This is a great project!

  2. A.B. says:

    thanks for this post Olin!

    always down to feed the less fortunate. actually a lot of restaurants around town (Starbucks and Cheesecake Factory that I know of) give their excess daily foods to registered 501-C3's as long as there is someone to pick it up on a daily basis. Just passing that along.

    Aloha Harvest is a non-profit organization that picks up quality, excess food donations and delivers it “free of charge” to over 140 social service agencies that feed the hungry and homeless on O`ahu. The agencies we serve are diverse: food pantries, shelters, feeding in the park programs, elderly care, and youth care. All must have 501 (c)(3) status to qualify.

    Aloha Harvest is operated by a small, qualified group of four full-time and two part-time employees. The full-time staff includes Executive Director, Ku‘ulei Williams, Food Donation Coordinator, Isabel Claucherty and weekday drivers, Dwayne Corpuz and Kawehe Brown. The part-time staff is – Greg Nacapoy (Saturday driver) and Jayson Canoneo (Sunday driver).

    A typical day for an Aloha Harvest driver involves about 20 – 30 pick-up stops for food donations, which are then delivered (that same day) to three to eight agencies. Safely handling and transporting donated food is an integral part of what we do. We operate using strict guidelines, and have efficient sanitary systems in place for the responsible handling of food, from the time it’s picked up to the time it arrives at its destination.

    Aloha Harvest fills a vital niche in O‘ahu’s community. Thousands of would-be hungry individuals depend on Aloha Harvest’s deliveries of donated food every day. This innovative concept of transferring food is a cost-effective approach to alleviating hunger among one-in-four islanders. Not only does Aloha Harvest provide much needed food to feed the hungry, but Aloha Harvest helps to keep good quality food from going to waste and diverts it from the waste stream. Got excess, quality food? Partner with Aloha Harvest on Oahu!

  3. A.B. says:

    | actually thanks Andrea for posting =)

  4. Olin Lagon says:

    Mahalo for sharing the info on Aloha Harvest. Lots of good orgs out there. What is sad is that like Andrea's post points out, there is much food in Hawaii that is allowed to drop and rot. I hope this initiatives can redirect some of that food.

  5. A.B. says:

    | I agree Olin. There are a group of Botanists at UH that do research to take Mangoes and various types of fruit (on the ground after falling from trees) and use the sugars in the fruit to turn it into some type of fuel. Dr. Will McClatchey was one of them, awesome dude. He's gone to Texas now so I don't know who took over.

  6. Vivian Best says:

    It's fantastic that there are people on our island actively picking breadfruit! If you have other home-grown produce that is going to waste, you may want to consider donating it to "Give It Fresh Today" on Saturdays at the KCC Farmer's Market. The farmer's market provides a weekly dropoff point for people who are able to pick their excess and would like it to to an organization that feeds the homeless. Give It Fresh Today has a facebook page, and if you're interested in volunteering to collect food on Saturdays you can sign up through the link on that page. I'm also starting a list of people who would be interested in gleaning food for the homeless, especially in the Palolo/Kaimuki/Kahala/Waikiki/Makiki areas. Please feel free to email me at if you're interested!

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