The Maui Cookie Lady is the first Maui company to sell its product at Saks Fifth Avenue in Honolulu. After year-long discussions and many layers of meetings, company owner Mitzi Toro has landed a floor spot at the luxury retailer with an exclusive product line, the Honu Sea Turtle Collection.
“We are beyond honored and excited for our first entry into the Honolulu retail market featuring our delicious made-on-Maui cookies that showcase Maui-made ingredients,” Toro said.
It’s not an easy feat for a small business, especially an artisan crafter, to scale up to a big order and adapt to the technical distribution processes and product-labeling procedures required by large retailers.
“For small businesses, the economies of scale from such a large customer go beyond product development,” said Wayne Wong, of the Small Business Development Center, Maui Office.
Toro began baking her unique monster-size cookies in 2012 as a fundraiser to thank the nurses at Maui Memorial Hospital for taking such phenomenal care of her terminally-ill father. She was encouraged to transform her cookie fundraiser into a business, first offering cookies for sale at town parties, then moving into retail outlets including the gift shop at the Maui Ocean Center Aquarium.
Photo: AJ Rezac Photography