Founded by her aunty Diane Kaneali‘i, Liko Lehua is now run by Dawn Kaneali‘i and her husband Matt. The couple runs the gourmet butters company–inspired by the fruits of Hawai‘i–and a café in Hilo, Hawai‘i. Liko Lehua’s mission is to provide secure livelihoods for their community by teaching and encouraging staff to develop their personal growth and fostering a safe environment where guests and staff feel like ‘ohana.
The tropical butter brand was born in 1996 along the slopes of Mauna Loa in Waiākea Uka, above the sleepy town of Hilo. A Native Hawaiian entrepreneur, Dawn remembers hearing stories of the ohia lehua groves that surrounded her great-great grandmother’s childhood home. Years after the company’s inception, Dawn’s aunty named Liko Lehua for their family’s love of lehua blossoms and the continued growth it inspired across their ‘ohana’s generations. Today, the family offers seven different flavors of butter: lilikoi, mango, guava, coconut, pineapple, Tahitian lime and Hawaiian vanilla. Each handcrafted jar captures the essence of Hawai‘i and captures those childhood flavors that evoke nostalgia.
How they give back:
Liko Lehua incorporates fresh fruit from local farmers in their butters, and helps to keep local families employed by their business.