Hawaii’s First Private-Public Partnership Agricultural Park Expands
Monsanto Hawaii recently provided the Hawaii Agricultural Foundation (HAF) with 37 additional acres to the HAF Ag Park at Kunia, providing a total of 219-acres of arable farmland to small farmers.
Currently, farmers are growing a variety of produce, including fruit trees, cucumbers, tomatoes, chili peppers, taro, ulu, long beans, squash, okra, butternut squash, string beans and eggplant. Thislocally grown produce can be found at the Leeward Community College Sunday farmers’ market or via delivery service with Oahu Fresh and Holoholo General Store.
“Monsanto Hawaii is proud to support these local farmers and help sustain Hawaii’s agricultural industry,” said John Purcell, Monsanto’s Hawaii business and technology lead vice president and senior science fellow. “The HAF Ag Park is one of many ways in which our company can help give back to our communities and contribute to our local economy.”
In addition to offering agricultural land to help sustain local farmers, Monsanto provides in-kind support including security, land preparation (e.g., mowing, disking), technical expertise and bulk purchasing opportunities to ensure the success of both the farmers and the Park.
The HAF Ag Park at Kunia was established in July 2011 as a private-public partnership between Monsanto Hawaii, the Hawaii Agricultural Foundation and Island Palms Communities, who leased the land to Monsanto Hawaii to help preserve agricultural acreage and integrity.
“We’re pleased to see that our partnership with Monsanto and the Hawaii Agricultural Foundation is giving small and local farmers a good foundation to build their businesses,” said Pete Sims, project director for Island Palm Communities. “Monsanto’s expertise and desire to help farmers achieve economic self-sufficiency has been a tremendous asset to everyone involved.”