When the American Protestant missionaries arrived in the Islands in 1820, they had to adapt to a new diet; for the most part, the missionaries had a very Hawaiian diet. Fish (i‘a), taro (kalo), poi, pigs (pua‘a), chickens (moa), bananas (mai‘a), sweet potatoes (‘uala) were regular parts of the missionary diet. (HMCS) Much of the food came in the form of gifts from the ali‘i. According to the account books, these gifts of food from the ali‘i occurred virtually daily for over 10 years.
In addition, the missionary diet included: melons, squashes, cabbages, cucumbers, green corn, beans, fresh pork, goat, goat’s milk, bread, rice, mountain apples, bananas, pineapples, butter, wine, plus spices such as cinnamon and allspice, beef, and fish. The missionaries also ate New England foods shipped to them: dried apple rings, sea biscuits, salted beef and pork, and things made from wheat flour. The aliʻi also provided the missionaries land so they could grow their own food.