King's Hawaiian

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King's Hawaiian
TypePrivately held company
PredecessorRobert's Bakery
FounderRobert R. Taira
Harbor Gateway, Los Angeles, California (Torrance, California postal address)

King's Hawaiian is a Los Angeles-based family-owned and operated bakery, known chiefly for its Hawaiian bread. It was founded by Robert Taira in Hilo, Hawaii, in the late 1950s.


Robert Taira founded the company, then called Robert's Bakery, in Hilo, Hawaii, in the late 1950s.[1] In 1963, the company moved to Honolulu and changed its name to King's Bakery.[1][2] In 1977, the company expanded to the mainland United States by opening a bakery, King's Hawaiian Bakery, in Torrance, California.[2]

By the 1980s, Taira's company, King's Hawaiian Bakery, was grossing US$20 million annually.[3] In 1988 the company moved its headquarters to the mainland.[1] The Honolulu bakery closed in 1992.[2] In 2002, the company opened a new restaurant and bakery called The Local Place Bakery & Cafe in Torrance.[4]

Taira died in May 2003 and left the company under the control of his family.[2] In October 2003, King's Hawaiian moved its bakery to a 151,000-square foot facility in the Harbor Gateway neighborhood of Los Angeles (which has a Torrance postal address).[2]

In 2010, King's Hawaiian announced that it was planning to open a 111,000-square foot bakery and distribution center in Oakwood, Georgia, by fall 2011.[5]

Fast food restaurant chain Arby's seasonally sells sandwiches featuring King's Hawaiian buns. The sandwiches are Kings Hawaiian BLT and Roast Beef and Swiss (which includes Grey Poupon Honey Dijon mustard). There is also a seasonally-available King's Hawaiian Fish (which includes a slice of tomato and a slice of Market Cheddar, along with the usual lettuce and tartar sauce). In September 2014, a barbecue brisket sandwich was introduced on the King's Hawaiian buns. It is named "BBQ Brisket Sandwich" [6]

In 2016, King's launched a new line of BBQ Sauces consisting of four flavors; Big Island Lava, Smoked Bacon, Original Sweet Pineapple, and Kona Coffee.[7]

By February 2018, King's Hawaiian had expanded its Georgia bakery from 100 employees to more than 650 employees and three production lines.[8] By July 2019, approximately 75% of King's Hawaiian production was coming from the Georgia bakery.[9]


In 2014, King's Hawaiian used now retired MLB player Shane Victorino to advertise their products, using the slogan "Go Pupule".[10]

In 2016, King's Hawaiian entered a three story tall float representing the beauty of the Hawaiian Islands in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. The float included a volcano that erupted confetti and a stage for musical performers.[11]

In 2018, King's Hawaiian released an 82-minute Halloween-themed animated film titled "The Legend of Hallowaiian" featuring the voices of Mark Hamill, Vanessa Williams, and Tia Carrere. The film was produced by Canadian animation studio Arcana Studio and King Hawaiian's production company Fresh Baked Films and distributed by SC Films International.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Elizabeth "Nani" Nihipali; Lessa Kanani Pelayo; Christian Hanz Lozada; Cheryl Villareal Roberts; Lorelie Santonil Olaes (14 May 2012). Hawaiians in Los Angeles. Arcadia Publishing. p. 49. ISBN 978-0-7385-9320-3. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e Espanol, Zenaida Serrano (6 June 2003). "King's Bakery founder Robert Taira, dead at 79". Honolulu Advertiser. Gannett Pacific Corporation. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
  3. ^ Laudan, Rachel (1996). The food of Paradise : exploring Hawaii's culinary heritage. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press. ISBN 978-0-8248-1778-7. Archived from the original on 2016-08-22. Retrieved 2020-02-17.
  4. ^ "King's Hawaiian Website".
  5. ^ Tobin, Rachel (8 September 2010). "King's Hawaiian to produce signature rolls in Hall County". Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Cox Media Group. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
  6. ^ "Arby's® KING'S HAWAIIAN® Roast Beef Sandwiches – Developing Deliciousness". King' Archived from the original on 2013-07-10. Retrieved 2019-09-10.
  7. ^ Shannon, Molly. "King's Hawaiian Just Stepped Into The BBQ Game With 4 New Sauces". Food Beast. Food Beast. Retrieved 17 June 2016.
  8. ^ Gill, Jeff (20 February 2018). "King's Hawaiian focusing more on adding products than production lines". The Gainesville Times. Metro Market Media. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
  9. ^ Podo, Kelsey (12 July 2019). "Meet three women who are breaking manufacturing stereotypes". The Gainesville Times. Metro Market Media. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
  10. ^ Rice, Katelyn (2014-04-04). "The Boston Red Sox "Go Pupule" for King's Hawaiian". GlobeNewsWire. Retrieved 2021-05-19.
  11. ^ Engle, Erika (2016-06-13). "King's Hawaiian bakes up Macy's float". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved 2016-10-12.
  12. ^ Wohl, Jessica (2018-10-22). "King's Hawaiian (yes, the dinner roll brand) releases a full-blown animated Halloween film". AdAge. Retrieved 2019-05-06.

External links[edit]