There’s No Water Under The Bridge Commemorative Edition Maui Sand Burials & the Grand Heist of 30Mil a Year Hawai‘i – Where the Water Buffalo Roam Community Reach & Growing it Forward Raw Milk Movement Opportunity for Hawai‘i Kalama Intermediate is New Home for Upcountry Farmers Union Meetings Commodification of Culture: Notice of War Crimes Maui A&B Sugar Lands Sell for $262 Million Food Sovereignty and Food Security in Hawai‘i: Food For Thought Na Wahine Koa / Strong Women Kipahulu Farmers Honored by Aloha Festivals Farmers Voice Hawaii √ 2018 Election Choice SATURDAY Kanaka Maoli March to Vote The Struggle For Wai Has Taken Its Toll Reporting Pesticide Use Near Hawai‘i Schools Improved Communication needed amongst Kahikinui Leaseholders Sustainable Agriculture Committee December 2017 Newsletter Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā If You Canʻt Erase, Use White Out Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Pa‘ia Developer Fails in His Promise To Reach Community How to Host A Community Meeting Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Dirty Dozen Done Hawai‘i Good Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Island Air Aloha & Passwords Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Manaʻo o ka Lā Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Raising Maui Girl Power Gets Good Venison vs. Vegans Finding the Empowered Farmer East Maui Contested Case Hearing Final Arguments Monday SenesTech Answers Regarding ContraPest East Maui Water Study Where’s The Beef? A&B Jeopardizes a Natural Industry STOP A&B from Stealing Water for Bt Corn Turn Green Waste Into Fuel Hawaii State Senate Hawaii Senator Phone List Straight Up Moloka‘i Good News Moʻomomi, Moloka‘i Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area Proposal Preparing For Water Sustainable Agriculture Sensibility Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Maui Farmers Market A&B Position Statement 2016 Maui County Shenanigans Capture National Attention Maui Activists Set Stewardship Standard Illegal Tour Operators Create Crowds East Maui Demands Veto on Special Interest Legislation HB2501 The Great Heart of Waiokane Maui Backyard Farming Swap Taro Festival Best Ever Stage for Water Rights Holy Cow, Ho‘omau! Church Still Standing Early Attendance Suggested for BF70 March 10th Meeting Maui Garden Exchange HFUU Convention Largest Ever for Growing Organization Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Makahiki Abundance Response to Little Fire Ants (LFA) in Nahiku Ka Mana‘o o ka Lā Welcome to Farmers Voice Hawai‘i

There’s No Water Under The Bridge

no water

There has been 150 years of water theft from East Maui by conglomerate sugar barons. Their gross entitled attitudes have overflowed into abuse of power in cooperation with status quo, bought-off politicians. The reprehensible damage done to this remote East Maui area is not all visible. The fallow fields of kalo that once were, are easy to see …. the missing bodies of the farming landscape, are not. It has been estimated that from 1990-2010 88% of the able would-be farmers of this area were felled by drugs, prison and/or death.

For two decades, drugs were rampant in the rural villages of East Maui and it took another decade to rid the deep decay it caused. It took strong parents and elders to share stories, help families get by, and strengthen the next generation of non-drug users. In general, it has been found that rural areas have suffered from chronic drug problems. To address this, the American Farm Bureau Federation and the National Farmers Union have worked tirelessly on opioid addiction at the national policy level.

opioid impact on farm country
Graphic via article at

In the 1800’s, East Maui was the breadbasket of Maui – farming kalo, feeding its people, and exporting its excess. That changed in 1870 when Alexander & Baldwin starting diverting East Maui water for its sugar plantations which resulted in empty stream beds and fierce invasive species that began to dominate the area. After A&B received multiple water permit extensions and engaged in decades of mutli-layered, multi-agency rhetoric, East Maui’s demand for the end of water diversions prompted litigation by farmers and Hawaiian gatherers. Despite a court ruling that there shall be no additional extensions of temporary revocable water permits, the A&B real estate corporation, under the guise of sugar cane farming, has pleaded with gross ridicule against the area’s indigenous and intergenerational farmers.

A&B has not used appropriate metrics with regard to its business on Maui and the results have had a miserable and catastrophic impact. Its reliance on past corruption drives this company’s approach and, if it continues, this will lead to self sabotage. Everyone associated with the direction this company is taking is an accomplice to the fate of fallen farmers. Lack of adequate support for farmers occurs not only in Hawai‘i, but is also pervasive on the US mainland and in other farming countries.

The New Republic reports:

“Besides weather, the entities that control farm prices largely have to do with business interests that lobby heavily at the state and federal levels. If the behavioral health state of farmers if poor, you can bet those lobbies are winning.” – Mike Rosmann is a farmer and clinical psychologist who runs AgriWellness, a non-profit connecting farmers to behavioral health services.

The tireless efforts of peaceful, law abiding residents have yet to achieve their objective of full stream flow restoration. There have been countless rallys, focus groups, meetings, public testimonies, and conversations for all who would listen. The one hundred fifty year water diversions are a sad chapter in Hawai‘i’s history. There’s no water under the bridge – and that’s the point!

The illegal overthrow of the Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands and the U.S. State of Hawai‘i’s allegiance to corporate control has never seen such a spotlight. The people power of hanging topics on social media clotheslines leaves little wiggle room for continued unfair and greedy practices. Repeat offenses have spurred and strengthened Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands connections and native tenant rights.

Intergenerational farming and ahupua‘a restoration are flourishing as State of Hawaii‘i elected officials once again consider extending water rights to A&B’s would-be successor, Mahi Pono. As this stretch of their 2019 legislative calendar comes to a close, all of Hawai‘i Nei looks for pono leadership from lawmakers. They can correct the longstanding injustice, let House Bill 1326 die, and restore water – hence food, people and place.

Honomanu circa 1800's
Honomanu Valley, Maui circa 1800’s

To reach 25 elected officials with your voice, see:

Commemorative Edition

Farmers Voice Hawai‘i (FVH) is dedicated to those who farm, ranch and fish in the islands Hawai‘i. It was inspired by the need for farm story-telling in mainstream news media. The name “Farmers Voice Hawai‘i” was selected after research uncovered an historic national farming newspaper, Farmers Voice, that published through 1913. Hawai‘i has critically important […]

Maui Sand Burials & the Grand Heist of 30Mil a Year

Eight Meetings, Three Deliberations, Sand Moratorium on Friday Agenda Again excerpted from Sustainable Action Fund for the Environment (SAFE) In April last year (2017) Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa asked Mike White and the county council to study central Maui sand mining and consider imposing a moratorium. Councilmember Elle Cochran wrote a bill that proposed a […]

Hawai‘i – Where the Water Buffalo Roam

With simultaneous timing to the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture confirmation decision and the required published legal notice, Kauai kalo farmer Don Heacock and Arkansas water buffalo rancher Tom Olson, drove pregnant water buffalo 1600 miles from Texarkana, Arkansas to Los Angeles Airport for delivery to Hawai‘i via Air Cargo

Community Reach & Growing it Forward

blog-style post for International Women’s Day With all the nervousness in the air with new Maui sugar lands purchase and the constant national lure of despair, its taken some will power to stay positive. After careful observation of intergenerational farmers and the involvement of county, state and non profit organization support, I have to admit, […]

Raw Milk Movement Opportunity for Hawai‘i

UPDATE:  Unfortunately, although HB536 was scheduled for a hearing on Wed 1/31, the Committees ran out of time from other agendas that day and were therefore unable to receive testimony on this bill. Due to our advance notice requirements, in order to still consider this bill we were therefore required to re-schedule this bill and […]

Kalama Intermediate is New Home for Upcountry Farmers Union Meetings

          Haleakala Farmers Meeting Tuesday, January 22nd – Maui, Hawai‘i Farmers Union United Attention all ranchers, farmers, gardeners and people who eat food and want to support those who grow/catch/raise it. The Haleakala Chapter of Hawai‘i Farmer’s Union United is moving back Upcountry to our new home at Kalama Intermediate Cafeteria. […]

Commodification of Culture: Notice of War Crimes

PARENT WARNING: Disturbing pictures of animals included later in this article. It started a year ago. Department of Hawaiian Homelands granted a commercial operator Right of Entry and thus, exclusive hunting rights in the southern remote Maui area of Kahikinui. This contradicts policy on commercial activities of this sort by the Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL). DHHL sent […]

Maui A&B Sugar Lands Sell for $262 Million

HONOLULU, HAWAIʻI (Dec. 20, 2018) – Mahi Pono, LLC, today announced the purchase of approximately 41,000 acres of former Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company lands on the island of Maui from Alexander & Baldwin. This agreement ensures the continued use of these lands for agriculture, the preservation of green, open space in Central Maui, and […]

Food Sovereignty and Food Security in Hawai‘i: Food For Thought

In the preface of David Gumpert’s book, “The Raw Milk Revolution: behind America’s emerging battle over food rights”, Joel Salatin states: In the 1970’s I sold our homemade yogurt, butter, buttermilk and cottage cheese at the Curb Market (precursor to today’s Farmer’s Market) on Saturday mornings. In those days, the Virginia Dept. Of Agriculture had […]

Na Wahine Koa / Strong Women

Hawai‘i Public Radio provides continual community reach that enriches every corner of Hawai‘i. We are grateful for this story of Hawai‘i Women Warriors here and the many others since 1981 that have helped keep Hawai‘i residents and appreciators informed and thus empowered.       History of Hawaii Public Radio Hawaii Wahine Leadership   Featured […]

%d bloggers like this: