Crazy but driven
“When you’re starting off, it’s difficult to work on developing your business because you’re very busy inside your business,” says Mitzi Toro, known around the country as the Maui Cookie Lady. “In the midst of the craziness, you don’t have time for research, resources, and workshops.”
Like 65 other Maui entrepreneurs—and counting—Toro brought the craziness with her to the University of Hawai‘i Maui College’s Food Innovation Center (MFIC), the incubator for “foodpreneurs” assisting island residents with launching, accelerating, and expanding their businesses.
Toro says, “What I learned in that short time in the incubator was invaluable, considering how long it would take to go out and learn it on my own. The program brings you everything you need to know about building a business in the food industry, specifically for you and what your business needs.”
Big ideas into big success
With mentoring for business and technology, the Maui Food Innovation Center is a vibrant hub connecting industry leaders, producers, farmers, wholesalers, suppliers, retailers and consumers toward successful trade and a healthy Maui economy.
The state of Hawai‘i contributed $7 million to build 4,500 square feet of food innovation space for dry storage, wet processing, refrigeration, freezer space, packaging, receiving, and loading, as well as a conference room and office.
MFIC’s new space opens in August 2019. Your gift will purchase tools for food science and safety, and become part of an endowment for long-term inspiration and training for Maui’s entrepreneurs, for the good of Maui, its economy, and its people.