The Made In Hawaii Festival
is sponsored by the Hawaii Food Industry Association
, says Joe Detro
, but the many non-food items from 420 exhibitors also offer good taste
...in Hawaii Festival chairman Joe Detro,
...Your impresario for the Made in Hawaii Festival is Joe Detro, chairman of the Hawaii Food Industry Association (HFIA).
As the trade group's honcho, he
heads an all-star cast that stages this exciting exhibition of locally made products.
Made in Hawaii Festival
is produced by HFIA
and sponsored by First Hawaiian Bank
.It is supported by Hawaiian Airlines, Ohana Hotels, Budget Rent a Car
, Matson and the Hawaii Department of Agriculture
It's been a decade since former state Rep.
"It's a great opportunity to see what's new, what products are out there, and what's available," says Detro
, whose full-time job is overseeing Foodland stores as senior vice president of sales and operations.
"When we can buy local, we do," Detro
says of Foodland's commitment.
had a similar "not glamorous" start.He
was 14, when he
was hired as a bag boy at a hometown grocery store.Three months later, he
was promoted to clean-up boy in the meat department. He continued working in the grocery business through college, earning money to pay his tuition at Brigham Young University, where he majored in finance.
"I developed a passion for it," Detro
says of his
grocery career."It's a dynamic business.There are a hundred moving parts.There are changes to deal with every day, and you can tell if you're doing a good job based on sales." Detro
developed an expertise in perishables, especially meats and seafood, which has been the focus of his
career for the past 30 years.Before moving to Hawaii, he worked at Kroger, one of the nation's largest grocery retailers with annual sales of over $56 billion. Detro
is married (wife Nicole is also in the food trade) and has seven teenage children.So he
knows a thing or two about feeding large families.
The driving force behind the supermarket evolution, according to Detro
, is competition.Shoppers want greater variety, all in one place.The incorporating of healthy, whole, natural foods, for instance, is mainstreaming what was formerly considered specialty products.Foodland
has a buyer that concentrates solely on this niche market.
Gourmet, specialty and imported foods are also in demand, according to Detro
own son, who is an avid Food Network viewer, often requests special ingredients to fix what he
sees on TV.While healthy