Pouring Aloha Into Each Product
Oils of Aloha president Matthew Papania
discusses products with owner Dana
Its name says it all: Oils of Aloha promotes Hawaii as an international distributor of kukui and macadamia nut oil products.
In addition to Internet sales of its products, the company has two other main lines of business. The first is the manufacturing of kukui and macadamia nut oils, which are sold to skin-care companies on the Mainland, as well as internationally to companies like Shisheido and Estee Lauder.
The second is its own skin care line, Kukui AE, available at many local stores, and Kukui Essential Aftersun products, available in tourist venues and Longs Drugs. The aftersun products have a trademarked formula of oils called SOLaleur.
Oils of Aloha also sells a line of macadamia cooking and salad oils at selected grocery stores.
Company president Matthew Papania has been with the firm for 16 years.
“I used to keep some Kukui Essential Aftersun in my tackle box,” Papania says. “That was when I used to go fishing, before I got too busy. It’s good for sunburn.” He says Straub Hospital uses the product on its burn patients, and an American Medical Association lab test proved that the SOLaleur does reduce the redness in burns, and is effective on sunburns and can-
cer-treatment burns. The company sometimes donates its products to local hospitals.
The Waialua-based company, which previously sold only kukui nut lei, was purchased by Dana Gray in 1988. By 1993, the company had stopped making the lei and focused on the oils.
These days, with 22 employees and a manufacturing plant in Whitmore Village, the company is still moving forward, and is active with the North Shore Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Association and the Hawaii District Export Council.
Papania, a Waialua resident, says one of his latest projects is trying to be certified organic, as the industry is going in that direction.
And, he admits, it’s a challenge to keep costs down.
“It’s a juggling act of buying more bottles and labels because it is cheaper, and at the same time you need storage to put everything,” Papania explains. “We want to make sure we don’t run out of something.”
The kukui is the state tree, he notes, and Hawaiians used the kukui for jewelry, as spice for poke, and as medicine. “We are carrying on that tradition for locals and Hawaiians.”
For more information, call 637-5620 or log onto www.OilsofAloha.com
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