2020 Interactive Breakout Sessions with Q & A
Enjoy throughout the Convention: Kelly Stern ~ Stretch Break
Saturday, Nov 13 at 3 PM: Breakout Session Group #1
David Fisher ~ Garden World Labs: Business Planning For Yourself and For Others
Collaborating, whether it be with other farmers, family & friends, or with funders; requires putting numbers down on paper. In this hands-on interactive session you will learn how to do a cash flow projection, and break-even analysis - both tools that will help you make decisions as well as make your case to funders whether it be your spouse, a government program, or an investor.
BIO: Principal Investigator - Garden World Labs - is a Hawaii-based teacher and consultant who likes to demystify business planning, while also understanding that “fear of getting clear” is a barrier that holds people back, both on a personal and societal level. Fisher has worked both with HFUU and with many of its members over the last ten years.
FACEBOOK: David B. Fisher
LINKEDIN: David Fisher
Sandy Syburg ~ Purple Cow Organics: Compost: Undefined Product, Uninformed Customers
BIO: Sandy Syburg is co-founder, and President of Purple Cow Organics, a recognized leader in the field of organic soil amendments, supplying products, such, Bio-Active™ fertilizer and CX-1™ liquid biological amendment across the country. Syburgs certified organic farm is located in Oconomowoc, WI where he produces a variety of food, grain and seed crops, while innovating and testing potential new products.
WEBSITE: Purple Cow Organics
Mark Damon ~ Maui Bees: Observation Hives: A Visual Exploration of Bee Activity
Mark and Leah Damon have operated Maui Bees Inc as a family business in Kula, Hawaii for the past 10 years. When they first met, Mark and Leah combined their shared passion for bees and wholesome organically grown food to create a joint farming venture that was an immediate hit with the local community. They produce first quality garden fresh produce, organically fed pastured eggs and amazing Maui Honey, all available at their Kula farm stand.
WEBSITE: Maui Bees
John Liu ~ ERC Foundation: Ecosystem Restorations Camps
Also participating in the Saturday, Nov. 14 at 10:30 AM: Keypanel Discussion — Nature's Soil Building Process: Joel Salatin, Ray Archuleta, Jeff Moyer, John Liu
BIO: In the 1980s and 1990s John D. Liu worked as a television producer and cameraman with CBS News, RAI and ZDF covering geo-political events including the rise of China from poverty and isolation and the collapse of the Soviet Union. In the mid-1990s the World Bank asked John to document the rehabilitation of the Loess Plateau. Since learning that it is possible to rehabilitate large-scale damaged ecosystems John has devoted his life to understanding and communicating about the potential and responsibility to restore degraded landscapes on a planetary scale. Since 2009 John has worked with Willem Ferwerda the Founder and CEO of the Commonland Foundation, which is catalyzing privately invested large-scale restoration in many parts of the world. John is also the founder of the Ecosystem Restoration Camps movement that began in 2016 and has grown to currently 36 camps in 6 continents and continues to grow.
Studying ecology has had a number of academic appointments. In 2003 John was given a visiting Fellowship with the Faculty of Applied Sciences and the Faculty of the Built Environment at the University of the West of England (UWE), in 2006 John was named the Rothamsted International Fellow for the Communication of Science at the Rothamsted Research Institute of the UK, from 2008 to 2012 Mr. Liu pursued graduate studies in Soil science and ecology at Reading University, in 2009 Mr. Liu was appointed Assistant Research Professor at George Mason University, from 2010 – 2013 he was a Senior Research Fellow with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and in 2013-2014, Mr. Liu was asked to collaborate with the Critical Zone Hydrology Group, Vrije University Amsterdam. In 2014 Mr. Liu was named a research fellow at the Netherlands Institute of Ecology of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (NIOO/KNAW) and continues to study.
Mr Liu is currently Ecosystem Ambassador for the COMMONLAND FOUNDATION. John has produced, filmed, written, directed and presented numerous films on Environment and Ecology for the BBC, National Geographic, Discovery, PBS and other networks. John’s published and broadcast works are collected and available at: https://knaw.academia.edu/JohnDLiu
WEBSITE: Ecosystem Restoration Camps
Jeff Moyer and Dave Brant ~ Rodale Institute: Cover Crops
Planting cover crops is the most efficient and effective way to improve the health of your soil. But, what should you plant, when should you plant them and how do you manage them once they are planted? We’ll discuss these and many topics related to cover crop use in a diverse crop rotation targeted at improving the health of your soil leading to long-term farm stability and profitability. We’ll also discuss new technologies (roller/crimpers) focused on reducing tillage in systems that use cover crops as the backbone of their production model.
Also participating in the Saturday, Nov. 14 at 10:30 AM: Keypanel Discussion — Nature's Soil Building Process: Joel Salatin, Ray Archuleta, Jeff Moyer, John Liu
BIO info for Jeff Moyer: Jeff Moyer is a world-renowned authority in organic agriculture. His expertise includes organic crop production systems with a focus on weed management, cover crops, crop rotations, equipment modification and use, and facilities design.
BIO info for Dave Brant: David Brandt farms 1150 acres all no-till, in Fairfield County, Central Ohio. He began no-till farming in 1971 and has been using cover crops since 1978. David has participated in yield plots for corn, soybeans, and wheat into various covers. This information has been used by seed growers as well as county agents and universities to encourage other farmers to adapt no-till practices in their farming operations. He has also been planting various blends of cover crops to find out what benefits they provide to improve soil health. David has had articles published in Farm Journal, Ohio Farmer, Country Journal, and numerous no-till journals. He has worked in cooperation with The Ohio State University, University of Illinois, Penn State University, Purdue University and Milan Research Farm in Tennessee. At present David is working with OSU Randall Reeder and Dr. Islam on reducing input costs of fertilizers and herbicides using various cover crops which improve soil health. He is also working with regional NRCS soils lab in Greensboro, North Carolina on benefits of cover crops to improve soil health.
Charles Tressider ~ Nō Ka ‘Oi Mushrooms: Practical Home Mushroom Farming
Dr. Paul Hepperly ~ Albright Scholar: Earthworms Bioengineers of Living Soil
Saturday, Nov 13 at 4:30 PM: Breakout Session Group #2
Korean Natural Farming Discussion: Drake Weinert, KNF Livestock: Mike Duponte (not pictured), H.I.Majesty Farm: Logan Silsley, Bayfront Kava: Moose & Mimi
Logan Silsley ~ H.I. Majesty Farm
BIO: Logan Silsley is the Founder of The Haile Selassie Institute of Natural Farming and Higher Education in Kealakekua Hawaii. He does Natural farming consultations and farm conversions with a emphasis on KNF methods, permaculture design and regenerative practices. All showcased on his food forrest Farm in South Kona Hawaii. Educator, Farmer, Entrepreneur and Father, are some of his titles. Many of his lectures are available on the Institutes YouTube Channel.
WEBSITE: Institute of Natural Farming
YOUTUBE: Institute of Natural Farming
Moose & Mimi ~ Bayfront Kava
BIO: My name is Moose. I first came to Hawaii in 2015 as a backpacker and discovered my love for this land and it’s people, and Kava. After leaving the islands in 2016 I continued to travel and work in ski resorts which is where I met my wife to be, Mimi. We returned to the Big Island in the summer of 2019 after receiving an opportunity to become stewards of the land. We took Drakes knf class in November of 2019 and have been excited to share the results of our practice with the world. Loyal to the Soil!
Food Safety, Food Hubs and New Market Access: Kevin Kelly (NSEVP) with Lisa Rhoden
Food Safety compliance is at the foundation of new market access whether a farm is selling directly to a new customer or working through a food hub.
Kevin Kelly ~ North Shore Economic Vitality Partnership (North Shore EVP)
BIO: Kevin founded North Shore EVP in 2015 to lead implementation of regional economic development strategies including implementation of a food aggregation facility serving all North Shore farmers. In addition to working on food production and aggregation projects on Oahu, North Shore EVP also runs Hawai‘i’s only USDA GroupGAP dood safetey certification program.
Lisa Rhoden ~ North Shore Economic Vitality Partnership (North Shore EVP)
BIO: As Food Safety Director with North Shore EVP, she is responsible for assisting farmers with implementation of food safety practices and policies for their operation. She is the manager of the Hawaii GroupGAP program and looks forward to growing that organization with farmer partners across the state.
WEBSITE: North Shore EVP
Food Hub Heroes - Local Food in Hawai’i Pandemic Response: Saleh Azizi (Kahumana FoodHub), Dr. Noa Lincoln (UH)
In this presentation we examine the challenges and opportunities of Hawaii's food hubs during the COVID-19 pandemic based on the experience of practitioners on the ground and provides policy insights to the future endeavors of food hubs and local food systems beyond the pandemic. Saleh Azizi and Noa Lincoln are participants with the Food Hub Hui that has been facilitated by HFUU in the last two years.
Tropical Tree Fruit Trellis Systems: Peter Salleras (Australia) ~ Fruit Forest Farm
A practical (virtual ) sharing of knowledge of growing tropical tree fruits on Open Tatura (V) and T trellis systems. Working smart to gain more, better quality fruit per acre, sustainably and reliably.
WEBSITE: Fruit Forest Farm
FACEBOOK: Fruit Forest Farm
Soil Health & USDA Conservation Programs: Travis Thomason and David Komorowski
Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will discuss soil health principles and conservation practices throughout Hawaii. This break out session is an in depth look at the concepts of improving your soil’s health and applications of conservation practices. Examples from the field that demonstrate these concepts on working farms will be shown. Also presented will be the availability of NRCS Farm Bill programs that provide technical and financial assistance to implement soil health conservation practices. The application and planning process will be discussed for potential applicants. Application deadline is early December, so tune-in for details!
Travis Thomason ~ USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
BIO: Travis Thomason is the Director for USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service in the Pacific Islands Area. He provides oversight of the agency’s programs, technology and administrative operations, along with regional direction and oversight for the agency's financial and technical assistance programs in the Pacific.
David Komorowski ~ USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
BIO: David Komorowski began working for the NRCS in 2007. His career started in Michigan where he worked with a variety of agriculture producers in both the northern and southern parts of the state. He moved on to work in a couple field offices in New York State, then out to Oregon, and now here in Hawaii. His love for soil health is so strong and promoting the creation and proper utilization of biochar is his passion. He enjoys other aspects of his job that include habitat restoration, wetland conservation, and forest stand improvement but his love for promoting soil health in agricultural settings is his favorite part of his job.
Buff Out Your Farm with Dairy Buffalo: Don Heacock (Kauai Organic Agroecosystems)
BIO: Don Heacock is a lot of things. He’s just retired from 40 years as an aquatic biologist with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. He’s an advocate for sustainable agriculture that cultivates things like yerba mate, awa and taro alongside tilapia aquaponic projects on his 25-acre Lihue farm, called Kauai Organic Agroecosystems. Heacock worked for three years to change the state Department of Agriculture’s restricted animal list to allow the herd. It required hours of paperwork, dozens of meetings and some travel — but Heacock managed to bring the water buffalo to Hawaii from Arkansas, with the goal of increasing local food production and adding another tool to the box for battling invasive species. Excerpt from www.thegardenisland.com
LINKEDIN: Don Heacock
Value-Added Stories From Entrepreneurs: Meli James (Mana Up), Loren Shoop (Ulu Mana), Monica Bogar (Napili FLO Farm), William Davis (VitaliTea), Brandon Damitz (Big Island Coffee Roasters)
Meli James ~ Mana Up
BIO: Monica Bogar, is a passionate and dedicated farmer creating artisanal kimchi using fresh, organic, and tasty ingredients found nowhere else in the world. Like the kimchi she makes, Monica is born and raised on the island of Maui and is passionate about supporting local farmers and connecting and collaborating with them in an effort to raise awareness and the value of sourcing ingredients locally. She is the owner and operator of Napili Flo Farm, a sustainable urban farm located in the west-side's area of Napili. On farm, she grows everything from fruit trees and seasonal vegetables to small farm animals. Her place brings together community, where children, students, visitors, and adults can come and learn about healthy, natural, and nurturing ways to farm. From aquaponics to full-circle sustainability methods, Monica's farm teaches others how to plant, raise, and grow food in a way that is pono. Being a model for other aspiring small farmers, bridging the gap between farmers , chefs and local food manufacturers she is hoping to continue her efforts in supporting small farmers on Maui and throughout Hawaii through business and education. Using her entrepreneurial mindset instilled in her by her parents, she believes there is a brighter future awaiting Hawaii's farmers right around the corner. She is the mother of two sons and when she's not farming you can find her surfing, cooking, entertaining and enjoying helping others.
WEBSITE: Mana Up
LINKEDIN: Meli James
Loren Shoop ~ Ulu Mana
BIO: Born and raised on the Big Island, Loren now makes Oahu home where he is the founder of 'Ulu Mana. A local manufacturing company that makes delicious snacks out of 'ulu (breadfruit). He also runs HawaiianFarmersMarket.com where he retails locally made products along with retailing them at farmers markets across Oahu. A recent alumni of the Mana Up accelerator.
WEBSITE: 'Ulu Mana
LINKEDIN: Loren Shoop
Monica Bogar ~ Napili FLO Farm
BIO: Monica Bogar, is a passionate and dedicated farmer creating artisanal kimchi using fresh, organic, and tasty ingredients found nowhere else in the world. Like the kimchi she makes, Monica is born and raised on the island of Maui and is passionate about supporting local farmers and connecting and collaborating with them in an effort to raise awareness and the value of sourcing ingredients locally.
She is the owner and operator of Napili Flo Farm, a sustainable urban farm located in the west-side's area of Napili. On farm, she grows everything from fruit trees and seasonal vegetables to small farm animals. Her place brings together community, where children, students, visitors, and adults can come and learn about healthy, natural, and nurturing ways to farm. From aquaponics to full-circle sustainability methods, Monica's farm teaches others how to plant, raise, and grow food in a way that is pono.
Being a model for other aspiring small farmers, bridging the gap between farmers, chefs and local food manufacturers she is hoping to continue her efforts in supporting small farmers on Maui and throughout Hawaii through business and education. Using her entrepreneurial mindset instilled in her by her parents, she believes there is a brighter future awaiting Hawaii's farmers right around the corner.
She is the mother of two sons and when she's not farming you can find her surfing, cooking, entertaining and enjoying helping others.
WEBSITE: Napili FLO Farm
LINKEDIN: Monica Bogar
William Davis ~ VitaliTea
BIO: Founded VitaliTea in 2015 on the island of Maui. We produce Kombucha Tea and Nitro Cold-Brew Coffee, focusing heavily on “balance”, sustainability, environmental conservation and supporting the local island community & farmers. A commercial airline pilot, father, husband, runner and cross-fitter.
WEBSITE: VitaliTea Hawaii
Brandon Damitz ~ Big Island Coffee Roasters
BIO: Brandon Damitz is co-founder and Director of Green Coffee & Producer Relations at Big Island Coffee Roasters. He utilizes his coffee farming experience and relationships from the past decade in Hawai'i to promote quality, product diversification and education in the coffee supply chain. As a coffee farmer and curious tinkerer, he leveraged his perspective of value-added processing to create Espresso Bites -- edible coffee that's disguised as chocolate -- which is now in 120+ retail stores.
WEBSITE: Big Island Coffee Roasters
LINKEDIN: Brandon Von Damitz
Saturday, Nov 13 at 5:45 PM: Breakout Session Group #3
Coffee in Hawaii, the Caffeine Localvore: Gerry Ross ~ Kupa'a Farms
This presentation will cover the promise and peril of growing coffee in Hawaii as part of a diverse farm for personal and commercial use.
BIO: Gerry Ross is a former earth scientist who has been farming coffee, tropical fruit, and organic vegetables on Maui for over 15 years.
Aquaponics Discussion on Start-up and Ramp-up (Airlift Systems): Glenn Martinez ~ Olomana Gardens
Local Seeds for Local Needs 101: Evan Ryan
Cooperatives 101: Teresa Young ~ Kohala Center
Teresa Young MA, Rural Cooperative Business Development Specialist with The Kohala Center, has 15 years’ experience as a developer in the many cooperative business sectors. Her current work is focused on support of Hawai‘i cooperatives to build a food system that can sustain healthy lifestyles and produce the food needed to nourish our island families. Past experience also includes assistance to worker-owned cooperatives in the homecare and restaurant industries. Teresa also brings understanding gained through years of experience working with cooperative housing communities in low-income settings, as they develop leadership and self-direct their own communities.
BIO: Teresa Young MA, Rural Cooperative Business Development Specialist with The Kohala Center, has 15 years’ experience as a developer in the many cooperative business sectors. Her current work is focused on support of Hawai‘i cooperatives to build a food system that can sustain healthy lifestyles and produce the food needed to nourish our island families. Past experience also includes assistance to worker-owned cooperatives in the homecare and restaurant industries. Teresa also brings understanding gained through years of experience working with cooperative housing communities in low-income settings, as they develop leadership and self-direct their own communities.
WEBSITE: Kohala Center
Value-Added Food Strategies: Brynn Foster (Voyaging Foods), Dana Shapiro (Ulu Coop), John Cadman (Pono Pies), Nahealani Breeland (Ola)
Trained by Earthworms-Tour of Grand Farm (Austria): Alfred Grand
The story of GRAND FARM from Austria in Europe! Inspired by the work of earthworms, Alfred started his vermicomposting activities more than 20 years ago. He developed the first commercial continuous flow vermicomposting system in Europe and fell in love with research. Cooperating with the scientific community did not only convince him to convert his family farm to organic agriculture, but also later on develop it further into a research and demonstration farm. Get some insights into the work and research activities of VERMIGRAND Naturprodukte GmbH and GRAND FARM.
BIO: Alfred Grand is an organic farmer and entrepreneur from Austria. At VERMIGRAND he is producing organic fertilizer and peat free soil substrates with the help of earthworms. In 2007, Alfred developed the first commercial continuous flow vermicomposting system in Europe. In 2019 GRAND FARM was developed into a research and demonstration farm, focusing on soil health, agroforestry and market gardening. Alfred is part of a range of national and international research projects, member of the Global Lighthouse Farming Network, an Ambassador for the European Innovation Partnership for Agriculture and member of the EU-Mission Board for Soil health and food.
WEBSITES: Grand Farm
FACEBOOK: Grand Garten
LINKEDIN: Alfred Grand Vermigrand
Farmer Apprentice Mentoring Program Overview: Anabella Bruch & Sarah Gilligan
The Farm Apprentice Mentoring (FAM) program is a signature program of HFUU and HFUF, its Foundation, a 501(c)3. FAM integrates Hawaiian cultural practices of sustainability and land management with a whole systems approach to agriculture. FAM program modules are delivered by certified instructors from the UH Maui College Office of Continuing Education (OCET), and the Sustainable Living Institute of Maui (SLIM). Each of the classes are followed by an on-farm immersion as information learned in the classroom is applied on a working farm. Upon completion of Phase 1, apprentices who have satisfied levels of attendance and learner outcomes receive a Certificate of Professional Development from the UH-Maui College OCET.
The Hawaii Farmers Union United is excited to announce new leadership for the Farm Apprentice Mentoring program, or FAM, with the dynamic team of Sara Gilligan, who is now Education, Outreach and FAM Program Director, and Makenna Anderson, the FAM Project Coordinator.
WEBSITE: HFUUHI.org - FAM