Would you buy organic produce from Oprah Winfrey if you got the chance? It might soon be a reality here in the Islands. It appears she is turning her 160 acre property in Hana, Maui into a new business. The US patent office late last month received seven trademark filings under “Oprah’s Organics,” “Oprah’s Farm,” and “Oprah’s Harvest.” Earlier this year, several websites quoted a National Enquirer story in which Winfrey joked that she might move to Maui to run an organic farm if her Oprah Winfrey Network cable television channel didn’t work out.
According to her rep, Oprah says she wants to use her Maui farm to grow and distribute produce throughout the state. But these filings also clear the way for all kinds of products from frozen foods to beauty supplies. According to an article in Pacific Business News,http://www.bizjournals.com/pacific/blog/2012/11/oprah-puts-her-famous-brand-on-organic.html the Oct. 29 application for Oprah’s Organics said “the trademark is for everything from soaps and shower gels, cleansers, lotions and moisturizers to shampoos, conditioners and sunscreens. The Oprah’s Harvest application filed on Sept. 7 just says it is for food, beverages, agricultural and catering services, but the New York Post’s Page Six reports that the applications also cover organic salad dressings, frozen vegetables, soups, beverages and snack dips. A Winfrey representative told the Post that the trademarks filed for Oprah’s farm were for produce to be grown and distributed on Maui and the rest of Hawaii.”
I feel it’s my civic duty here on Maui to report this to you, because “Where does Oprah live on Maui?” And “Oprah’s Farm” are two of the biggest search terms this blog receives. It would appear that even though Oprah has retired from network television, people still can’t get enough news of her.
It will certainly be interesting to see what this organic produce from Oprah will cost here on Maui. Gerry Ross and Janet Simpson own Kupa’a Farms, an organic farm in Kula. http://kupaafarms.blogspot.com/. From their website it says that Kupa’a means firm or steadfast in Hawaiian and “describes the hard soil on our farm and our determination to amend and enrich it. The land was first cleared for corn and asparagus in 1979 and went organic in 2003.” I admire Gerry and Janet. Organic farming is not an easy life, unless you are someone who thinks that rising at 4 am is your idea of a good time.
But then if we really believe that Oprah will be gettin’ up at 4 am to pick her own vegetables, then we probably also believe that the Easter Bunny fills in for Santa when he’s sick.
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