Can agriculture become a major Hawaiʻi industry again? | University of Hawaiʻi System News


After the demise of the pineapple and sugar industries in Hawaiʻi, might agriculture be revived as A critical financial driver for our state? College of Hawaiʻi Economic Evaluation Group (UHERO) specialists say That is potential, However the state Might want To beat some challenges.

In UHERO’s latest short-term, “The agricultural financial panorama in Hawaiʻi and the potential for future financial viability,” researchers say the financial worth of Hawaiʻi’s agricultural manufacturing has declined A lot Greater than the state’s bodily manufacturing of agricultural items, as a Outcome of shopper prices have skyrocketed at A extremeer price than wholesale agricultural prices.

One set off for UHERO’s optimism is that researchers say the state has extra idle cropland than harvested cropland, which represents an financial alternative. They advocate using these areas to capitalize on Hawaiʻi’s rich soils and best local climate To enhance productiveness of extreme-worth crops (fruits, greens, and so on.).

Lack of mechanization

Hawaiʻi’s agriculture enterprise Does not make the most of machines to carry out duties as much as extra productive agricultural areas on the U.S. mainland. This Leads to unusually extreme labor prices and associated low labor productiveness. Evaluationers say The scarcity of mechanization Is Beset off of “the comparatively small scale and distinctive geography of Hawaiʻi’s agricultural land, which is comprised of smaller and extra fragmented fields That Can be rockier and extra steeply sloped.” UHERO advocates using rising know-how, Similar to synthetic intelligence and robots, Which may favor smaller-scale mechanization.

Agriculture knowledge challenges

Agriculture knowledge Is restricted and error-susceptible, making it troublesome to detect rising tendencies in Hawaiʻi‘s agriculture enterprise, Based mostly on UHERO.

“Some regular metrics, like common farm measurement, Could be particularly deceptive Due to method farms are outlined, The method By which knowledge are collected, And the method each definitions and sampling change over time. Some surveys exclude Hawaiʻi or have very small samples from the state,” UHERO said. “Improved knowledge assortment may shed clearer mild on challenges and prospects for Hawaiʻi agriculture.”

Study The complete short-term on UHERO’s internet website.

This short-term is a Adjust to As much as UHERO’s “Reviving Agriculture to Diversify Hawaiʻi’s Financial system” short-term revealed in January 2021.

UHERO is housed in UH Mānoa’s School of Social Sciences.

This work is an event of UH Mānoa’s objective of Excellence in Evaluation: Advancing the Evaluation And inventive Work Enterprise (PDF), Definitely one Of 4 goals recognized Inside the 2015–25 Stpricegic Plan (PDF), up So far in December 2020.