In 1991 I bought the business from the Deguchi family, since Mr. and Mrs. Deguchi were going to retire. They had run the Kitch’n Cook’d potato chip business out of a shack in their backyard for some 50 years. I then moved the business to a building that was about a block away from their house in Captain Cook (Kona). We stayed at that location for 10 years and manufactured the potato chips out of the same equipment that the Deguchi’s had used.
In September of 2001, we relocated the business to my brother-in-law, Dwight Manago’s new building that he had built for us so that we could expand our business. We were now located right next to the Manago Hotel, which is where we are today.
We now had a huge area to manufacture our product, and it is at that time that we decided to automate our equipment. We also decided to change our packaging since a lot of people were confusing us with the Kitch’n Cook’d on Maui. We simplified our name to Kona Potato Chips and created a new Hawaiian look to our packaged.