Our Vision is to:
Create a Sustainable Future for Hawaii
To further organic and sustainable agriculture, land care, and lifestyles in Hawaii, thus giving meaning and life to our state motto:
Ua mau ke ea o ka aina I ka pono “The Life of the Land is Perpetuated in Righteousness.”
- Moving toward self-sufficiency and food independence for Hawai’i
- Conserving, maintaining and enhancing Hawaii’s resources
- Creating harmony and balance between Hawaii’s environment, economy, and people
- Supporting organic local agriculture
- Avoiding the use of harmful chemicals which poison the food we eat, the land we live on, the water we drink, and the air we breathe
- Sustainable agriculture and land care practice
- Doing the right thing
- Taking responsibility
- Respecting and taking care of the ‘aina
- Planning for the benefit of future generations
The Hawaii Organic Farmers Association (HOFA) was formed in September 1993 in response to the federally mandated Organic Food Production Act (OFPA) of 1990. The purpose of OFPA is to set consistent organic production standards nationwide, and to boost consumer confidence in food claimed to be “organically grown.” Any produce claiming to be “organic” in the USA must be certified as such by a USDA-NOP accredited certification agency.
Hawaii has a long history of feeding her people with an abundance of wholesome, organically grown food. Only in the past century has self-sustaining agriculture been replaced by chemically based monoculture and the importation of basic foods.
Now, in these changing times, Hawaii’s farmers, and her organic farmers in particular, are again looking to supply a great variety of foods to meet the local needs of an expanding health-conscious population.
After discontinuing the certification services in 2011, it was necessary to redefine HOFA’s purpose. The outcome is a rejuvenated organization, with ambitious goals and an active board.
Focus on Organic
We are focused on helping the people of Hawaii learn about growing organic food. Both commercial organic growers and back yard gardeners. Soil health is the source of plant health. We work to build and remediate soils. We are also working to help farmers make the transition from conventional to organic agriculture.
In addition, the board has reached out to other organizations to collaborate with, such as the Organic Committee of the Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation, and The Kohala Center. HOFA President, Mark Fergusson, is participating in the Organic Industry Advisory Committee that is evaluating the organic industry’s needs in Hawaii. This study will help identify ways in which HOFA can best serve its members and the organic industry. Besides its legislative activities, HOFA is working with organic farmers and other organic farming industry stakeholders to develop an educational program, which will include presentations, assistance with the transition to organic, how to deal with organic products as a retailer, participation in local events, etc.
To achieve the goals HOFA has set, we need a strong membership base. The more members HOFA has, the louder our voice will be heard. HOFA will be undertaking a membership drive to recruit members from all parts of the organic industry: farmers, processors, distributors, retailers, other industry participants, and consumers.
Our aim is to build a broad-based membership organization that effectively represents the industry to the legislature and to the public. The slight change in HOFA’s name from “Farmers” to “Farming” was done to make it clearer that HOFA serves the whole organic industry.
At the same time, we recognize farmers are the backbone of the organic industry and the genesis of HOFA. The name change is intended to reflect the broad scope of the people and stakeholders we serve. Our intent is to respect and build upon the strong foundation laid by HOFA’s founders, and the hard work of the organic farmers, without whom none of this would be possible.