Hawaiian Host to buy nut processor from Hershey

by Staff
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Mauna Loa offers a range of macadamia nut products.

HONOLULU — Hawaiian Host, a maker of chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, has reached agreement to acquire Mauna Loa from The Hershey Co. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Mauna Loa dates to 1946 when Castle & Cooke Ltd. established an orchard in Keeau, south of Hilo, Hawaii. Hershey bought Mauna Loa in 2004 for $130 million. Today, the company offers a range of macadamia nut products.

Hawaiian Host said it will keep Mauna Loa a subsidiary and separate brand.

“Both companies have a long history of operating in Hawaii and sharing our products with the world,” said Keith Sakamot, president of Hawaiian Host. “We remain committed to continuing to offer the same quality products our customers have grown to know and expect.”

Hawaiian Host was founded in 1960 when Mamoru Takitani moved to Honolulu from Maui and bought Ellen Dye Candies. The company claims to be the first seller of chocolate-covered macadamia nuts.
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