On Top of the Aloha Beat BLOG


Lush Kauai co-exists with Agrochemical Efforts

I just read a pretty provocative article about the GMO efforts happening on Kauai's west side and how much of our food on island is chemically processed and imported. Did not make me feel too good although we buy most of our produce from locally held farmer's markets. Read this compelling  story about Kauai and some of the research that happens here. The author is clearly passionate but i felt there was enough good info here to link to it. THis little snippet below is taken from the article. I'm fortunate to have a good friend who grows organic dwarfed apple bananas and papaya on Kauai's NOrth Shore and shares them with me every week.

Kauai's  North Shore is a lush place of almost heartbreaking beauty with a vibrant, racially mixed local culture. There, the Waipa Foundation hosts a weekly farmers market selling organic local food to support its work reviving traditional foodways. Like many Native Hawaiian organizations, they have a Hawaiian-language immersion school that integrates traditional food, farming, and fishing into their curriculum. They connect local farmers with schools, which are getting young people out of the classroom and into the mud of the taro patch. Activists on the island and throughout Hawai‘i are working toward food security. They achieved a ban on genetically modified coffee and are bringing back the original “gift economy” of exchanging traditional varieties of taro.

Just up the road from the Waipa farmers market, Limahuli Garden is restoring the traditional Hawaiian land-use system called an ahupua‘a. Kawika Winter, an engaging young ethnobotanist, Native Hawaiian, and the garden’s director, says the name lima huli means “turned hand.” It refers to a Hawaiian proverb which, roughly translated, says, “If your hand is turned up, you will be hungry; if your hand is turned down, toward the soil, your belly will be full.” The up-turned hand, Winter says, is not a positive symbol for Hawaiians. It is a sign of supplication. The down-turned hand, however, represents the hard work of cultivating the land.

Winter explains that the work they are doing there is all about remembering that the land is our ancestor. “We know that the way to get through difficult times is to use what was left to us—our land and our traditional knowledge. That will carry us into the future,” he says. “This is also our gift to the world.”

Visit Kauai's Sunshine markets to procure some of the locally grown and organic food available on the Garden Island


Ron Margolis, RA, CDPE, ABR Hawaii Life Real Estate Services 808.346.7095 email: ron@hawaiilife.com

Comment balloon 2 commentsRonnie Margolis • April 20 2009 10:45AM


Aloha Ronnie,

We have not begun to fully understand what our tampering with the natural order of things will do to our eco-system and our very existence. GMO's are simply mans attempt to play God and patent the results. I have very little faith in the greed of man, what makes me more concerned is turning greed into seed. We should be self sustainable in food production here in Hawaii but thanks to the legacy of the missionary's and their greedy spawn we produce very little in terms of food and are dependant on the shipping and import companies for virtually everything. What a sham!


Posted by Kimo Stowell, REALTOR AssociateĀ® RS-76763 - Honolulu Hawai'i (HI Pro Realty LLC RB-21531 ) over 11 years ago

You are preaching to the choir, my friend. I, however, have plenty of improvement opportunity in reducing my own carbon footprint.

Posted by Ronnie Margolis, Kauai Realtor - CDPE, ABR, RA - On Top of the Aloh (KW Kauai) over 11 years ago