HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

2494

TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2018

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to the state beverage.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature has designated a state song, flower, gem, tree, land mammal, marine mammal, fish, dance, insect, sport, team sport, and musical instrument. However, Hawaii has no state beverage even though more than half of the states in the United States have official beverages. The designated official state beverage of Hawaii should serve as an expression of appreciation for the significance of that beverage in the Hawaiian culture. Awa or kava (Piper methysticum) is a Hawaiian canoe plant, plants taken or transported to other Pacific islands by Polynesian explorers. The roots of the kava when grated and extracted produce a beverage with some psychoactive relaxant properties that is viewed as being enjoyable.

The plant roots of the kava plant (Piper methysticum) have been used to make the beverage known as awa here in Hawaii since before European contact. Hawaii is the best state to cultivate Piper methysticum because of the State's sunny, humid conditions, and year-round warm temperatures. The residents of this State, including the kānaka maoli, Hawaii's indigenous people, recognize awa as an important traditional and cultural beverage. Drinking awa promotes "aloha" by eliciting a feeling of relaxed contentedness that aids in discussion and conflict resolution. The legislature concludes that awa symbolizes the environmental, social, and cultural values important to Hawaii.

In Hawaii, awa was a very promising agricultural crop with the European Union and Germany, a major market. Due to concerns about liver toxicity, it was banned in the European Union and the market, and production crashed. The toxicity question has been largely resolved by avoiding the use of extracts of stems and leaves and using only extracts of the root. It is hoped that recognition of awa as a state beverage would revive and stimulate agricultural production and provide a promising crop for small farms in Hawaii.

The purpose of this Act is to formally recognize the importance of awa's historical significance and its deep cultural roots in Hawaii by establishing and designating awa made from Piper methysticum as Hawaii's state beverage.

SECTION 2. Chapter 5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"5-   State beverage. Awa made from Piper methysticum is established and designated as the official beverage of the State."

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

Awa; Official State Beverage

 

Description:

Establishes and designates awa made from Piper methysticum as the official state beverage.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.