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Minutes HPIA Board Meeting April 15, 2022

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Hawaii Papaya Industry Association

Board Meeting April 15, 2022



The meeting was held via Google Meet and started at 3:30 PM on April 15, 2022.  Attending were Chantal Vos, Darren Strand, Ken Ogawa and Eric Weinert.  Toshi Aioki was excused as he was traveling.  Not in attendance was Lowell Jose and Koji Okamura.

Office Rent

We were notified that our rent of $150 per month for our office would be raised to market or over $700 per month. The Board decided to close the office as of this month instead of paying higher rent.  There is a strong possibility that we can continue to receive mail at that location which would allow us to keep our physical address at 190 Kamehameha Ave in Hilo. Darren made a motion and Ken seconded to close our office this month pending any strong objection by absent board members.  The motion was unanimously approved.

Tax Return

Carbonaro CPAs have our financial information for  2021 and have already sent in the request letter to file our taxes later in the year.  This has been standard practice for HPIA.


The board agreed to have Eric send out invoices for 2022 dues to all the 2021 members including handlers, independent growers and associated members.  The packing houses will be asked to pay the dues of all the growers who currently supply their packing houses with papaya fruit and may choose to be reimbursed by the growers if they choose.

Papaya Ski Tour 

The report for the Social Media campaign on the Papaya Ski Tour was emailed to the Board.  The campaign lasted three months, January, February and March of 2022.  Over 6,500 miles were driven over nine Western States visiting o fifteen different ski resorts, including Aspen, Jackson Hole, Alta, Steamboat Springs, Big Sky, Taos, Tahoe, and others.  Social media posts were made at least once a week on Facebook and Instagram.  Hawaii Papaya has it’s own Facebook account, and Eric dressed in a papaya suit at each resort to promote papaya at least once at each resort.

SHAC Update

The HPIA working with SHAC is promoting Hawaii Papaya in Canada.  The report to SHAC for HPIA produced by Cardin Communications was emailed to all Board Members.  The goal is to find more retailers to carry Hawaii papaya especially on the East Coast.  To that end they did promotions for the Canadian Produce Marketing Association and are running specific social media ads targeted to that audience.  The marketing efforts also include increasing consumer awareness in Canada for Hawaii Papaya.  Our website has been revised to accommodate that effort and we contracted with a professional photographer to build a library of papaya photos that are suitable for lifestyle social media promotions.  Those efforts continue 2022 and will be expanded on in 2023.

Hawaii DOA

As part of the Hawaii Department of Agriculture’s ongoing efforts to facilitate the purchase of locally produced food by State institutions, HDOA invites local agricultural producers to share product availability information with HDOA and our and our state-operated institutional partners (i.e. schools, hospitals, prisons)  Any member wishing to participate should contact

Additionally, Mr William and the HDOA is applying for the USDA Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program Grant (FSMIP). We are reassessing Hawaii-grown papaya local and domestic supply chain, post-2019 Kilauea Eruption recovery and the Covid-19 pandemic. We are seeking HPIA as a project partner to obtain data for this important project for the Hawaii Papaya Industry.  This project aims to reassess Hawaii’s fresh papaya supply chain disruption caused by the Kilauea lava flow destruction of farm assets and the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on the availability of fresh papaya locally and domestically. The data will also provide papaya availability along the value chain and the trade between the local and export/out-of-state markets.  The Board voted unanimously to participate as a partner with the understanding that the Board would specify certain goals and data collection to help our industry assess the scope of the Papaya Industry as it currently is within the State of Hawaii, which would include acreage grown by area and island, number of farmers growing papaya, farm gate price, cost of production.

Website Committee Meeting

All board members wishing to participate in a committee meeting with Kerri from Cardin Communications are invited to join a zoom/google meet meeting on Friday April 29th at 8:30 HST.   Please RSVP to Eric via email to get a link and invitation.  One idea was to hold a contest giving away papaya for guests registering at our site, similar to the WestJet Airlines Magazine contests run in the past Canadian SHAC promotions.

HPIA Board Meeting Schedule

The Board agreed to schedule the remainder of Board Meetings for 2022 on the 2nd Friday of July, September and November at 3:30 in the afternoon.

Meeting was adjourned at approximately 5:00 P