Hilo, Hawaii – VIDEO by David Corrigan
As the Hawaii County Council discussed a resolution that would create a Food Policy Council during Wednesday’s meeting in Hilo, a county department head suggested amending the plan to start a long awaited County Agriculture Advisory Commission.
The original version of the resolution, introduced by North Kohala councilman Pete Hoffmann, was in concert with the County Research and Development Director Randy Kurohara’s vision for the commission.
Kurohara said the details of the commission would be tailored to reflect the final draft of the County of Hawaii Agricultural Development Plan, due to be finished soon. Many of the farmers in attendance at the plan’s public listening sessions cited the lack of such a commission as a major detriment to Big Island agriculture.
The Food Policy Council/Ag Commission plan places emphasis on food sustainability, including programs designed to promote local community food production and distribution facilities, the expansion of the County’s Senior Nutrition program, effective incentives to increase the amount of farm land in current production, and the use of food stamps at all farmers markets.