Still time to apply for Kaua‘i Made

If you have the next great Kaua‘i Made product, or want to help market one, the time to submit an application is running out.

Kaua‘i businesses and individuals interested in participating in the county’s Kaua‘i Made program will need to submit an application by March 15.

Applications can be downloaded from the county’s Web site, www.kauai.gov/oed or picked up at the Office of Economic Development located at the Lihu‘e Civic Center, Mo‘ikeha Building, Suite 200.

The director of OED, Beth Tokioka, said in a press release, more than 50 local businesses have already applied for the Kaua‘i Made program.

“The response has been tremendous from local product-makers and retailers,” said Tokioka in the release. “I encourage others who haven’t applied for the program yet to please do so.” 

“If your product is made on Kaua’i and you use a significant amount of Kaua‘i materials and labor, chances are you will qualify for the Kaua‘i Made program,” Tokioka said in the release.

A wide range of products in a number of categories will be accepted including: food, beauty, crafts, apparel, music, art, jewelry and gifts.

For a retailer to participate in the program, he or she must carry Kaua‘i Made products, use point of purchase materials provided by the county, and give the products prominent visibility in their store, said Tokioka.

Investment in the program on the part of the vendors and retailers is $50 a year for vendors to list an individual product or product line, while retailers will be charged $75 per establishment.

Tokioka said that a rigorous screening process is in place to ensure that those who are accepted into the program are creating products that can be truly called Kaua‘i Made.

“The goal of the program is to market high-quality, authentic Kaua‘i products and the retail outlets that carry the products,” said Tokioka, adding that it was designed primarily to help small business people who don’t have the resources to promote their products.

Strong marketing support is planned for the Kaua‘i Made program. It will include a Kaua‘i Made products Web site to reach visitors before and after their visit to Kaua‘i. Brochures indicating where to shop for Kaua‘i Made products will also be part of the marketing efforts.

Other marketing elements will be added as resources become available, said Tokioka in the release.

A special logo for the Kaua‘i Made program has been created that features a traditional Hawaiian ho‘okupu (gift) wrapped in ti leaves.

“We really love this logo because of its cultural significance and because the ho‘okupu can represent any type of product,” said Tokioka in the release.

Funding for the Kaua‘i Made program was provided by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and the county of Kaua‘i.

For more information, contact the Office of Economic Development at 241-6390.

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