HTA President & CEO John De Fries, Brand Manager Irina De La Torre, and Chief Brand Officer Kalani Kaʻanāʻanā met with legislators, farmers, ranchers, and members of the community at Agriculture Awareness Day at the State Capitol.
Farmers and food producers from across the state gathered at the Hawaiʻi State Capitol on February 9 for annual Agriculture Awareness Day celebrations. Reinforcing our commitment to strengthening agriculture statewide, HTA hosted an educational booth at the event sharing information about our commitment to supporting local agriculture and partnerships within the state’s ag industry. Ag industry partnerships are important, accelerating our momentum in encouraging diversification and creating a model of regenerative tourism.
HTA has taken several actions over the past few years demonstrating our ongoing support in this area. We are a signatory to Hawai‘i Green Growth’s Mālama Mandate, committing us to advancing Hawaiʻi’s Aloha+ Challenge and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, as well as the ʻĀina Aloha Economic Futures Declaration, which envisions a circular economy in which food and agriculture are an integral part.
Through various HTA programs, we have supported the University of Hawai‘i’s GoFarm Hawaiʻi farm tours, the Hawaiʻi Farm Trails mobile app and ʻāina-based initiatives created by organizations such as ʻĀina Momona, Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi and Kaʻala Farm. HTA also developed an agritourism guidebook with GoFarm Hawaiʻi, the Oʻahu Resource Conservation and Development Council, and the Hawaiʻi Agritourism Association.
We are also working to deliver on community priorities articulated in our Destination Management Action Plans, many of which reference support of local food and value-added products, looking to grow the $98 million spent by visitors on Hawaiʻi agriculture products in 2019.