From: Fern Gavelek Communications, 808-329-0833
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Primary Contact: Ken Love, 808-323-2417,


BIG ISLAND OF HAWAII—A Kona couple has been recognized by Guinness for growing the world’s largest soursop.
   Ken Verosko and Beth Smith of Honaunau’s South Kona Fruit Stand and Farm recently produced an 8.14-pound soursop that measured 24 inches around and 11.5 inches long. The gargantuan fruit was harvested in June.
   According to Ken Love, executive director of the statewide Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers Association (HTFG), this is the third time a fruit grown in Kona has been deemed a Guinness World Record.
   The late George Schattauer and his wife Margaret of Captain Cook earned the record for the world’s largest jackfruit in 2003; it tipped the scale at over 76 pounds. In 2006, Colleen Porter grew the world’s biggest mango in her Kailua-Kona orchard. The massive mango weighed five pounds, seven ounces and was about the size of a human head.
   “What’s really amazing is that this soursop grew so big with the drought we’ve been having,” says Verosko.
   The couple received a certificate from Guinness on July 30 making the world record official.
   Smith describes the taste of soursop as “a pina colada without the rum.” The New York native says the flavor is a combination of pineapple, banana, lime and coconut. She says soursop is ripe when a yellowish-green and soft to the touch. To eat it fresh, you cut it in half and spoon out the fruit.
   “You have to spit out the seeds, like eating a watermelon,” Smith details.
   The exotic fruit can be used to make a delicious juice, preserves or jelly. In Malaysia, its delicate flavor enhances ice cream and puddings while in the Philippines, a young fruit is cooked as a vegetable with coconut milk.
   Medicinally, the soursop has multiple uses. Young shoots and leaves are a remedy for coughs and indigestion. Leaves are mashed to alleviate eczema and rheumatism. The unripe fruit has astringent properties.
   The couple grew their gigantic soursop on their six-acre farm where they cultivate 700 fruit trees, including mango, avocado, citrus, pomegranate and dragonfruit. Verosko says the season for soursop varies but the fruit is still for sale at their stand, which is located between mile markers 103-104 on Hwy. 11.
Upcoming HTFG Conference
   August 15 is the deadline for early registration with a discounted fee for the 20th Annual Hawaii International Tropical Fruit Conference. The gathering is September 24-26 at the Aston Aloha Beach Resort on Kauai.
   The anniversary event is geared for farmers, educators, orchard managers and proponents of sustainable agriculture. Headlining the conference is Dr. Noris Ledesma of the Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden Center in Florida.
   The HTFG conference is open to the public. Registration forms are available on <> or by contacting Love at <> . It’s sponsored by the Office of Economic Development County of Kauai.
Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers
Incorporated in 1989 to promote tropical fruit grown in Hawaii, HTFG is a statewide association of tropical fruit growers, packers, distributors and hobbyists dedicated to tropical fruit research, education, marketing and promotion; <> .
Fern Gavelek
2006 Small Business Admin.
Journalist of the Year Hawaii County
2009 Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce Member of the Year
Volunteer Publicist for Hulihe‘e Palace since 2004
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Fern Gavelek Communications
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