Honolulu, Hawaii
                                                     , 1999

                                   RE:  S.B. No. 454
                                        S.D. 1

Honorable Norman Mizuguchi
President of the Senate
Twentieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 1999
State of Hawaii


     Your Committee on Economic Development, to which was
referred S.B. No. 454 entitled: 


begs leave to report as follows:
     The purpose of this measure is to require accurate labeling
of aquatic food grown, manufactured, significantly processed, or
landed in Hawaii.

     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure
from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the Big Island Fishermen's
Association, the Hawaii Fishermen's Foundation, and three
individual fishermen.  The Boat Owners Association of The State
of Hawaii submitted testimony in favor of the concept.  The
Department of Agriculture, the Hawaii Food Industry Association,
and the Hawai`i Restaurant Association submitted testimony in
opposition.  The Department of Business, Economic Development,
and Tourism submitted comments.

     Your Committee finds that mislabeling or deceptive labeling
of aquatic products is a problem for both the local fishing
industry and the consumer.  Hawaii fishery operations must
compete with cheaper, imported products often labeled with
Hawaiian names and sold as local seafood.  Many consumers,
particularly visitors, are not aware of this and have no way of
judging whether the "local catch" they purchase is truly from

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                                   STAND. COM. REP. NO. 68
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     Your Committee also finds, however, that referring to a fish
type by its Hawaiian name is a strong marketing tool, especially
for Hawaii's fledgling value-added seafood product manufacturers.

     Your Committee understands that many of the parties
concerned with this problem, state agencies charged with
enforcement, local fishermen, Hawaii restaurants, and others have
been meeting to resolve the issues of false or misleading
labeling of aquatic products.  While no unanimous recommendations
have resulted, your Committee believes this measure will begin to
address the problem.

     Your Committee has amended this measure by amending
subsections (c) and (d) of the measure, which relate to unlawful
sales, to provide an exception:

     (1)  For products that qualify as Hawaii-made under section
          486-119, Hawaii Revised Statutes; or

     (2)  Unless the term "imported" or the region of origin
          precedes the Hawaiian name.

     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your
Committee on Economic Development that is attached to this
report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose
of S.B. No. 454, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass
Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 454,
S.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Commerce and Consumer

                                   Respectfully submitted on
                                   behalf of the members of the
                                   Committee on Economic

                                   LORRAINE R. INOUYE, Chair

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