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Tanikai to Close After 49 Years in Business

One of Maui’s long time distributors is shutting down at the end of the month after 49 years of business. Prior to the pandemic that paralyzed the countries economy, Tanikai was very close to selling the company over to a buyer which pulled away just when the mandate from the government took effect.  

Mr. George and Mrs. Jeanette Kadokawa created Tanikai in 1971, along with their 5 children who all grew up helping the family business.  They started to deliver goods like Diamond Bakery, Frito Lay, Jade Seed Candies, and Knudsen juices.

In 1987, the family decided to sell Tanikai to Hawaiian Host than in 1993 Hawaiian Host sold it to Dennis Ouchi who then took over and expanded Tanikai into a diversified company.  Carrying well-known things such as Aloha Shoyu, Hula Brand, Noh Mixes, Keebler Cookies, all National Brand Candies, Wholesale Unlimited, Hawaii Candy, ONO Hawaiian Seasoning, Duracell batteries, and Itoen. There were also vending machines that provided snacks and drinks to places all around Maui like hotels to condos and even Maui businesses, both big and small. 

When Dennis retired in 2016, Steven Saito and Leanne Ota (Dennis’s daughter) took over and decided to move Tanikai to its current location at 890 Lower Main Street.

Due to many changes in this industry, including Covid19 they were sad to say to their employees “we are going to be closing our doors now for good”.

For almost 50 years they have been proud to serve Maui County thanks to all of the hardworking employees and loyal customers who have turned into a family they will miss them all.

They still have candies and snacks available and will be open Saturday 4/25/20 from 8-3:30 pm. The last day will be April 30th 

For more information call Tanikai (808) 242-6813

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Jon Viloria is the Field Production Director at MAUIWatch. Jon works in collaboration with staff writers and editors to create finished video productions. He also manages all location and studio videotaping, audio recording and processing, video editing, and the compositing of special video effects on a variety of media platforms. Jon is also owner of Maui based video company- Digital Audio Vision.

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