Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Pineapple Princess, Maui still loves you

Maui Land & Pineapple Co. has been way more about real estate than fruit for many years now, but that changed yesterday in a small move that is big in the hearts of locals.

About 65 workers arrived at dawn for the first day of work at a new though much smaller pineapple company that will allow fresh pineapple farming and packing to continue on Maui. They picked 41 tons of the juicy "Maui Golds" in about five hours. The new operation, Haliimaile Pineapple Co. began on 1,000 acres of leased land with some equipment purchased from Maui Land & Pineapple Co.

All workers were former employees of Maui Pineapple, which shut down last week after 97 years in operation. The company laid off about 285 employees and transferred 130 to partner companies.