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To Support Local Farmers, Maui County Launches Its Own Department of Agriculture

KULA (HawaiiNewsNow) – Maui County is the first in the state to launch its own Department of Agriculture.

Local farmers said it was a major step in diversifying the economy and becoming fully self-sufficient.

“I think it’s entirely possible,” said Waikapu farmer Bobby Pahia. “But, it takes political will.”

The new Maui County Department of Agriculture promises to defend ranchers and farmers in Maui, Molokai and Lanai.

Molokai’s new director and her deputy were introduced at a press conference at Kula Agricultural Park on Wednesday morning.

“With this role, I will certainly make sure their voices are heard and their concerns are addressed,” said Maui County Agriculture Department Director Rogene “Kali” Arce.

Maui residents voted for a county agriculture department in the 2020 election.

“This Department of Agriculture will be one of the most watched, watched and probably emulated later by other counties once we show how it works,” Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino said.

The department aims to create a sustainable future for farmers so that they can serve as a role model for the rest of the world.

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