By Alicia Maluafiti – We commend Kauai Mayor Bernard Carvalho for his decision to veto Bill 2491 (relating to pesticide use and GMOs) and for recognizing that the measure was severely flawed and would do more harm than good for Kauai County.
We thank the Mayor for his leadership in giving thoughtful consideration to balancing the issues raised in Bill 2491. This measure, although intended to be good for the community, would have had long-term negative effects on all agriculture in Kauai and our state, not just the seed industry or big agriculture.
These past several months have been difficult for Kauai. Bill 2491 has divided us – families, friends and neighbors – for far too long. It is time that we come together and do what the people of Hawaii have done for so long – ho’oponono, work together for a better Kauai.
Since this measure was introduced, the public debate has been loud, emotional and often filled with fear, rather than fact. As responsible stewards of the land, we take pride in growing the seeds that help farmers all over the world grow safe, healthy and affordable food for all people. We care for the land and the people of Kauai and are committed to transparency, being good neighbors and working with the community.
We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the Mayor and the Council on how to address the concerns of the community and continue to support a voluntary program to address these concerns.
Alicia Maluafiti is the Executive Director of the Hawaii Crop Improvement Association