In Partnership with the Southern Weekend

Inside Hilo’s Maebo Noodle Factory: Home of the famous One-Ton Chips

Four generations of noodle makers

Sponsored by Hawaii Gas

If you grew up in Hawaii, you’re  probably familiar with Maebo’s famous One-Ton Chips! HI Now host Jobeth Devera is taking you to Hilo to get a behind the scenes look at how the popular snack is made.

The Maebo Noodle Factory got its starts in 1950 by Toshito and Koto Maebo. The couple started off by making noodles and won-ton pi in their garage in a Papaikou, a small, quiet town outside of Hilo. A few years later, they added sugar and tweaked the recipe, making a new, unique chip. The new creation was called One-Ton Chips, playing on the word won-ton.

Hilo is a small town where everyone supports each other, and the noodle factory cites the community as the key to its success. It appreciates all of its customers and fellow business owners for their loyalty over the years.

Although it has great community support, the factory has faced major setbacks. On September 30, 2003, a fire claimed everything. It took four years to rebuild and relocate the business. During that challenging time, the Maebo’s stayed alive by making chips in a temporary facility. Although it could not produce the ideal volume, it allowed business to continue until the new structure was completed.

Aside from Maebo’s famous One-Ton Chips, the factory recently released a furikake flavored one-ton chip that is glazed with butter and sugar. It tastes similar to party mix, but with one-ton chips instead of Chex Mix and pretzels. However, you can only get this flavor at KTA Super Stores or directly from the Maebo factory.

You can find One-Ton chips on all islands at most grocery stores, convenience stores and they are also sold at all Costco and Sam’s Club locations throughout Hawaii. The One-Ton chip cookies can be found at some grocery stores and at Longs Drugs on the islands of Hawaii and Maui. These can also be found at Marukai on Oahu and VIP on Maui.

For more information:, Instagram: @maebonoodlefactory