(HONOLULU ADVERTISER) -- A one-year jail term for a man who stole 300 pounds of mangoes from a Mokule'ia farm last year was hailed by an agriculture industry official as a step toward dealing with the continuing problem of thefts plaguing farms throughout the state.
Alan Takemoto, executive director of the Hawai'i Farm Bureau Federation, said the sentence sends a warning that might deter others.
"It sends a message (that) you're going to go to jail if you're caught stealing agricultural products," he said.
I can understand the jail sentence for stealing that many mangoes from a commercial farm, but heisting a few mangoes from a neighbor's yard is a favorite past-time in Hawaii.
You would understand why if you ever tasted a ripe Hayden, Golden Globe or Chinese variety mango grown in the islands. They are so much better than Florida or Latin American-grown mangoes they seem like a different species. The tangy-sweet flavor and ample juiciness make them my favorite fruit.
Harvest time in the fall and early winter is called "mango madness" in Hawaii. Some people devote half of their freezers to mangoes so they can eat them all year.
I feel sorry for the small percentage of people who can't eat mangoes because they are allergic to the juice and break out in a horrible rash if they even touch the fruit. They are missing a little piece of heaven.
"The earth was made round so we can't see too far down the road and know what is coming." -- Isak Dinesen, Out of Africa