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Must See Sites: Dole Pineapple Plantation

Throughout the years, Hawaiian agriculture has become a source of great nourishment for the world, with exports ranging from beef to coffee. Within the islands, agriculture helps to sustain the island, and keep the local economy moving with farmers producing mangos, avocados, macadamia nuts, and of course pineapple. The intimidating fruit has long been something of an unofficial fruit of the islands, and the pineapple is celebrated in great detail at the Dole Pineapple Plantation.

Pineapple production dates back for many years, with the peak of production falling in the mid-1900s. Despite the reduction in farming and exports, the fruit has remained a staple to Hawaii. The need for pineapples was so great that the island of Lanai was owned by the Hawaii Pineapple Company, now known as the Dole Food Company, and was the primary island where pineapples were grown.

On Oahu, the Dole Pineapple Plantation brings to life the history of pineapple production in Hawaii, and showcases the lifecycle of the fruit. From the countless rows of plants to the former canning factories, everything was done on site, and was one of the most popular places to work on the North Shore. Today, the plantation features the largest outdoor maze, a train ride around the plantation, and takes visitors on ride through the history of the plantation.

Today, around 400 million pineapples are produced in Hawaii each year, which represents less than 1 percent of the global pineapples production. While Hawaiian pineapples are still considered the standard, the production in the islands has changed drastically. The cannery that operated in Honolulu closed in 1991, and the last production of canned pineapples was moved out of the islands in 2008.

Many visitors to the islands make a quick stop at the Dole Pineapple Plantation on a Circle Island Tour of Oahu, and return during a full-day visit to the North Shore, allowing more time to explore and sample all of the different treats that include locally grown pineapples. Treats include the famous Pineapple Whip, pineapple chocolates, cookies, and candies. Plus, you can purchase a pre-packaged pineapple that is ready to ship, allowing you to enjoy an authentic Hawaiian pineapple at home, conveniently ready to ship it home without the hassle of packing it in your bag.

Oahu’s North Shore is a far cry from the city, and will be a day well spent. There are so many beaches to visit, places to eat, and the slower pace of life is what Hawaii is all about. A stop at Dole is only part of a day on the North Shore, and a visit is always a fun stop to make. You’ll be shocked to discover that there are different varieties of pineapples, and the pink pineapple is always a surprise!

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