WAIPOULI — “And do you have Goteborg?” the shopper asked. “I’ll take two of them in addition to the food box.”
The shopper who originally was shopping for edamame was just one of a steady stream of shoppers who stopped by the Y. Hata &Co. food truck that appeared at the Coconut Marketplace Tuesday when the farmers’ market reopened following a period of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is the first time they’re here,” said Eric Yeung, a longtime vendor at the Coconut Marketplace farmers’ market. “We’re trying to get more variety of vendors here to give people more choices.”
The shopper’s edamame was part of the Y. Hata &Co. Value Plus Kaua‘i BBQ Bundle that included three pounds of edamame, three pounds of marinated, boneless beef short ribs, three pounds marinated boneless chicken thighs, six, eight-ounce Wagyu beef patties, and 10 brioche hamburger buns. The bundle special was just one of several offerings. Others were box lots of various candies and treats.
“These are just part of the Value Plus Kaua‘i store located in the company’s warehouse,” said Paula Jepas, the Y. Hata Kaua‘i branch manager. “When we go to market, we load these into the truck, and here we are. We started on May 1, and the first site we visited was in Kekaha. The response was unreal. This is the first time we’re at the Coconut Marketplace market, and there are people.”
Jepas said they’re planning on future appearances at the Kilauea market, the Hanalei market that will open on Saturday, and, pending approval, the Puhi Park Produce on Wednesdays.
Darrell Low, Coconut Marketplace market coordinator, said the weekly farmers’ markets returns twice a week — Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Face masks, social distancing, health and safety guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 apply, with monitors checking to see if shoppers are in compliance.