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Opala Foods, LLC was founded in 2018 with the mission of simultaneously reducing green waste and increasing Hawaii’s food security. After extensive research, Noah Brown and Elijah Crow discovered that mushrooms hold the key to multi-generational sustainability. Mushrooms are nature’s decomposers and we chose Oyster Mushrooms - a genus of particularly tasty fungi known as “pleurotus” - to fulfill their mission.
The Story Behind The Name
Opala is a Hawaiian word essentially meaning “rubbish” - the discarded and unwanted. It’s a pretty strange name for a farm. They chose Opala Foods as their name sake because we purposefully utilize discarded materials. They've partnered with breweries, coffee shops, and arborists to change their waste materials into a high quality, nutrient dense food.
Oyster mushrooms have the ability to metabolize or “eat” a wide variety of materials from coffee grinds to banana leaves and even straw itself. They want people to think about our “single-use” lifestyles and how destructive it is. They chose Opala Foods because every mushroom grown by them is proof that there is probably a better use for everything you casually toss out.
Starting from a pure culture grown in their labs, they produce some of the finest specialty mushrooms in Hawaii, where they have chosen three varieties of oyster strains based on their taste, preferred growing environment, and resilience. They currently grow an aromatic summer white and a nutty brown cap called “pohu” (both p. ostreatus), and the show-stopping Pink Oysters (p. djamor).
Opala Foods is the passion project of two friends, Noah Brown and Eli Crow. Our purpose-driven urban farm is dedicated to enhancing Hawaii’s circular-economy by reducing the local landfill burden, improving Hawaii’s food security, and strengthening the connection between farms and tables.