Think About It: Fun Farm Facts - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

May 22, 2014

Think About It: Fun Farm Facts

Many times we've suggested that when you have the choice in what you buy, buy Hawaii first. It was a campaign we first ran over 25 years ago to remind you that when the quality and price of local goods and services are at least as good as anyone else's, then support your neighbors and friends by buying local.

So it was fascinating for me to learn last week in a Star-Advertiser article that farming acreage in Hawaii, and especially on Oahu, had grown between 2007 and 2012. According to U.S. Department of Agriculture information, farmland grew about 8,000 acres, which isn't all that much, but it's substantial considering that Hawaii had lost 181,000 acres of farmland between 2002 and 2007.  We now have fewer farms and farmers then before, but the ones still tilling are using a bit more land. And some of the items we're growing or raising here surprised me, too. Sure, we have over 900 nut farms in Hawaii, but 15% of those nut nurseries grow other nuts. And while we have a bison farm and 203 bee farms, we also have nine rabbit farms hopping along.

And Christmas tree farms have been chopped down- from 37 farms in 2007 to just 20 in play as of 2012, but many people probably assumed we had to wait for the mainland shipment of bug-less trees to arrive before we could celebrate the season. The variety of what we have here and the acreage it takes up is growing as of 2012, which is surely a better sign then erosion- of land, people involved in farming, and consumer products. So again, when you have the choice, when quality and price are what you want, then help your neighbors and our local tax base- and buy Hawaii first. You shouldn't even have to… think about it…

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