Food and Power in Hawaii Blog Post

This weeks reading of Food and Power in Hawai’i” Vissions of Food Democracy by Aya Hirata Kimura and Krisnawati Suyanata was very eye opening to me. The book describes not only the impact that farming in Hawaii has on the community and culture, but also to the whole region itself. In chapter 4, Farmers’ Markets in Hawai’i, there is discussion on whether or not farmers’ markets are good for the people of Hawai’i or not as it brings in tourists but hurts low-income families due to the rising prices to equate with the increase popularity. Here we raise the question: is it better to have a open-market or a private-market. While the open-markets provide for greater economic opportunity for farmers, it hurts the locals economically wise and deteriorates the culture of food in Hawaii. This is solved with private-markets that are generally for communities and low income families in Hawaii but may hurt the farmers overtime with the lower cost goods. It is interesting to me as I relate this with other Island hot-spots for tourism such as Bermuda or the Bahamas as a lot of their income comes from tourists, especially in the food industry. How may their culture or farming styles differentiate to Hawaii’s to adjust with the increased tourism?

Chapter 7, Women Organic Farmers in Hawai’i is a interesting chapter as it discusses the role played by women in organic agriculture and the challenges they face. These include hobby farm vs. real farm, organic or commercial motivations, and community-oriented tensions. Later on after the chapter we are introduced with a essay from Michelle Galimba which discusses her role on the island as a family ran farm business that provides beef to a wide variety of local restaurants.

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