Getting to the Root of Turmeric Production: Our Visit to An Organic Farm

by | Updated: September 18th, 2017 | Read time: 3 minutes

On a trip to Hawaii, you’ve got to make sure you experience the essentials—exploring beautiful beaches, hiking tropical terrain and shaking your hips in (or gazing admiringly at) a traditional luau. Touring a turmeric farm may or may not be at the top of your list of things to do. But on a recent Hawaiian adventure, Vitacost VIP Sarah-Grace had the opportunity to visit Kauai Organic Farms. Located on the island’s north shore, Kauai Organic Farms supplies the turmeric used in some of MegaFood’s supplements.

Hawaiian Turmeric in Dirt on Burlap |

Sarah-Grace learned a lot about this popular herb, including its benefits, uses and why you should always choose Hawaiian-grown turmeric. Plus, she got an insider’s peek at the farm’s operations and practices, while also getting to know more about MegaFood’s relationship with them. Here are a few highlights from her visit:

1. Open Field at Kauai Organic Farms | Organic Farms (KOF) has been working with MegaFood for about three years.

In their search to find the highest quality ingredients for their supplements, MegaFood looked to Hawaii for organic farms and growers, and they selected KOF for one of their Farm-Fresh Partnerships.

2. Owners Phil and Linda Green chose to partner with MegaFood because of the company’s integrity and commitment to creating quality supplements.

MegaFood actually sources over 700,000 pounds of fruits, vegetables and whole grains from six farm-fresh partners all over the country, because they believe that starting with whole, fresh foods is the best way to deliver authentic nourishment.

3. MegaFood uses KOF’s turmeric in multiple products.

This includes MegaFood Turmeric Strength for Whole Body and MegaFlora for Over 50 probiotics!

Fresh Turmeric Root from Kauai Organic Farms | KOF sends nearly 100 percent of their turmeric and ginger to the mainland to companies and distributors.

In addition to MegaFood, KOF sells its turmeric directly to produce distributors, juice and kombucha companies. The remaining small percentage of their crop is sold locally and on other islands to a few stores.

5. Hawaii’s climate and rich soil are advantageous for growing turmeric. (And for the growers, the beaches, breeze and scenery make Hawaii an excellent place to be!)

Turmeric is a tropical crop and thrives in Hawaii’s climate. A crop like blueberries, for instance, which requires cold weather, could not grow on the islands. The rich soil also means that the turmeric grown at KOF has a very low heavy metal content, unlike turmeric grown abroad.

6. Turmeric is planted in March, and KOF begins harvesting in late October or November.

The harvest lasts until about June, but turmeric is at its peak in the winter months.Turmeric Plants at Kauai Organic Farms |

7. With turmeric and ginger, pests aren’t a common problem, but fungus is.

When the root gets too wet, a fungus can form that causes it to rot. KOF helps prevent this with agricultural practices that keep the field healthy, like using cover crops planted in the off-season.

8. Conventional farms would use herbicides to kill weeds, but KOF pays their employees to weed by hand!

Because they’re a certified organic farm, any fertilizer KOF uses has to be pre-approved – certain fertilizers are OK, but others are not because of the substances they contain.

9. Their favorite uses for turmeric are a salad garnish and a smoothie add-in.

Owners of Kauai Organic Farms + Vitacost VIP Sarah-Grace | eating turmeric, add a bit of black pepper to your meal. Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, is better absorbed by the body with black pepper.*

10. Many athletes take turmeric for its anti-inflammatory properties.*

Professional sports teams have actually reached out to KOF to ask for bulk orders of turmeric to be sent to their players!


*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease.