Dairies in Hawaii

17 Feb

I’ve taken a hiatus as I’m expecting another baby, but I have some research that I just have to share.

Recently, I’ve been a bit more interested in learning about the dairy industry in Hawaii. This all started from a little idea I had to make homemade butter and sell it at the farmers’ market. I asked myself–”is there an organic milk supplier in the state?”

Now, I’m not a farmer–I’m a just a mom. So I did a quick little internet search to answer my question. Most of the local milk produced at dairy farms in Hawaii is sold to dairy processing plants, like Meadow Gold on Oahu. So, I knew I had to look up dairy farms specifically.

Well, in my little search just to see if there was an organic dairy in our state, I was sadly surprised to hear that there are only two dairy farms left in the entire state!

Both Hawaii dairy farms are on the Big Island, and both are not organic. Clover Leaf Dairy is in Hawi while Big Island Dairy is in Ookala. I did another little search to learn about each one, and guess what??

Big Island Dairy is growing GMO corn on their land, going against the of the local Hamakua Agriculture Plan!

Ok, well if I can’t get quality milk from a local dairy farm, can I get it from a local farmer? NOPE!

Last year, I wrote about how raw milk is illegal in the state of Hawaii. So, not only can you NOT buy milk from a local farm legally, but you cannot buy ANY local organic milk. This wasn’t always the case.

In the 1980′s almost 100% of Hawaii dairy products were local. Now, almost 80% of the dairy in the entire state is imported from the mainland, and the 20% that is local is includes some milk produced by cows fed GMO feed.

Bummer.

Anyone want to start an organic dairy farm?

For more info, check out:

http://hawaiitribune-herald.com/sections/news/local-news/gmo-corn-grower-spurs-protest.html

http://www.hawaiiforvisitors.com/about/dairy-farming.htm

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