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Farmers unenthused about Kauai food hub idea

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 10:01 a.m. HST, Jun 23, 2014

LIHUE, Hawaii >> A majority of Kauai farmers surveyed say they aren't interested in a food hub, a concept that would create a centralized processing facility.

Seventy percent of the 23 farmers who responded to a survey in a county-funded study said they weren't interested in collaborating with other growers to promote their products.

The concept for a food hub arose out of two studies to determine if it's feasible for the county to boost the island's food and agriculture industries by subsidizing a community kitchen and mobile or modular slaughter, chill and processing facility, the Garden Island reported Monday.

"Our rationale was that it makes sense to combine activities because you have a lower overhead instead of having it rely on one entity to carry all of the fixed costs -- you can share it among four different components in a food hub," said Jerry Ornellas, president of the Kauai Farm Bureau.

The $50,000 study was conducted by Auburn, California-based consulting firm Claggett Wolfe Associates.

"What appeared to be on the surface a really good idea -- and I thought it was a good idea -- apparently, after interviewing a number of farmers, including myself, by the way -- did not end up being the consensus among farmers," Ornellas said.

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LizKauai wrote:
Too bad about the slaughterhouse and chiller... oh well.
on June 23,2014 | 10:32AM
false wrote:
A 50k study? Should have just asked the Kauai farmers by phone. Oh well, a nice vacation in Hawaii.
on June 23,2014 | 10:39AM
false wrote:
people remember the papaya processing plant near the airport.....anyway, what ever happened to it????
on June 23,2014 | 11:34AM
mjr wrote:
Local food hub? Consultant fees already left the state ... no multiplier effect!
on June 23,2014 | 04:05PM
Kukuinunu wrote:
A good idea would be to construct/restore reservoirs and upgrade the irrigation system so farmers would have reliable water in more areas, they will farm if they have land and water.
on June 23,2014 | 04:25PM
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