Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 781

       S.D. 1




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Twenty-Ninth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2017

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Agriculture and Environment, to which was referred S.B. No. 781 entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to establish the Agricultural 2030 Investment Program and Farm to Plate Program in the State.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawaii Center for Food Safety, Hawaii Farm Bureau, Maui County Farm Bureau, Farm lovers Farmers Market, and two individuals.  Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Agriculture.


     Your Committee finds that there are historic and recent threats to the future of agriculture in the State, including the loss of sugar and pineapple plantations and dairy farms, rising energy and feed costs, the volatility of commodity markets, mainland and global competition, and climate change.  There are also many signs of expansion and opportunity, especially for diversified and specialty niche farms, including organic farm operations.  Your Committee finds that greater investment in agriculture will increase economic development, create jobs, improve access to healthy food, and improve biosecurity.


     Your Committee has amended this measure by:


     (1)  Extending the date by which the Department of Agriculture must create a strategic plan for agricultural economic development to December 1, 2018; and


     (2)  Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Agriculture and Environment that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 781, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 781, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Agriculture and Environment,