HONOLULU – In three days, Kamehameha Schools and Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation will close the application period for the 2015 Mahi‘ai Match-Up – an agricultural business plan contest dedicated to finding farmers to grow food for Hawai‘i’s market. Teams are asked to complete a short application by Friday, August 15, 2014.
“With more than 80 percent of our food being imported, and about 80 percent of Hawai‘i-grown products being exported, we’re looking for people whose hearts align with our vision for a more sustainable Hawai‘i,” said Keawe Liu, executive director of Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation.
Three winning teams will receive an agricultural lease for up to five years of waived rent from Kamehameha Schools and a prize pool totaling $50,000 in start -up money from Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation.
2015 Mahi‘ai Match-Up contest parcels:
Pa‘ala‘a – North Shore, O‘ahu – 5.0 acres
Ke‘ei- Kona Coast, Hawai‘i island – 3.7 acres
Pāhoehoe- Hāmākua Coast, Hawai‘i island – 9.5 acres
“We would like to thank our lead sponsors, Ulupono Initiative and American Savings Bank, for their generous support of this exciting contest that aims to support innovative and talented farmers,” said Liu.
For the next six-weeks, Kamehameha Schools and Ke Aliʻi Pauahi Foundation will review the applications and select teams to advance. The teams will then have two months to develop and submit their business plans for review.
All experienced farmers, aspiring farmers, entrepreneurs and anyone with fresh, innovative ideas are encouraged to submit an application before the deadline.
To apply for the Mahi‘ai Match-Up contest or for more information, visit www.pauahi.org/mahiaimatchup.
Important Mahiʻai Match-Up dates:
August 15, 2014 – Applications due
September 30, 2014 – First round finalists notified
November 30, 2014 – Business plans due
January 2015 – Finalists notified
February 2015 – Presentation to judges
February 2015 – Winners announced
ABOUT KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOLS’ AGRICULTURAL INITIATIVE
The Kamehameha Schools Strategic Agricultural Plan, completed in 2009, lays a vision and strategy for management and use of over 175,000 acres zoned for agriculture. Through the plan, Kamehameha is committed to increasing market share of locally grown produce, meat and other food products; investing in agricultural support facilities and infrastructure like irrigation systems; restoring and revitalizing traditional agricultural systems like lo‘i, loko i‘a, and dryland field systems; and contributing to a sustainable, clean energy future by supporting projects like solar and wind energy.
ABOUT KE ALI‘I PAUAHI FOUNDATION
The mission of Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation is to support the mission of Kamehameha Schools by seeking and developing new and diverse sources of income to support the ever-increasing educational needs and goals of people of Hawaiian ancestry. The Foundation accomplishes its mission in a number of ways including alumni support, endowed scholarships, early childhood education and literacy, charter school support, land stewardship and advancing the Hawaiian language.