Agriculture Awareness Day at the Capitol
Workers from Bayer Hawaii joined farmers from across the state to take part in the 13th annual Agriculture Awareness Day at the Capitol. Ag Day showcases Hawaii’s diverse agricultural industry and the many partnerships that make up this thriving industry.
The event which is sponsored by the Hawaii Farm Bureau, is an opportunity for policymakers and the public to learn about Hawaii’s agriculture industry and meet many of the organizations and people who supply our communities with locally grown and produced products. In all there were more than sixty-two exhibitors.
“It’s a great way to really see what’s going on in agriculture here in the state of Hawaii, it’s also a great opportunity for our policy makers and the public to learn about Hawaii’s agriculture industry,” said Brian Miyamoto Executive Director of the Hawaii Farm Bureau.
Many guests to our Bayer booth were excited to learn that we were handing out Seminis vegetables seeds packets, broccolini and peppers!
“As a major vegetable seed provider in Hawaii, it’s always gratifying to be able to highlight the produce that those seeds deliver,” said Alan Takemoto, Community Affairs Lead at Bayer Hawaii. “We also showcased tomatoes, cauliflower and onions that we recently grew on our farm in Kunia.”
Wahine to Wahine
While many were visiting the Bayer booth, the Wahine to Wahine (W2W) network including employees from Bayer and other local organizations were visiting with members of the Hawaii State Legislature. This diverse group of women from the islands of Maui, Molokai and Oahu strives to empower women to embrace and share the essential connection between agriculture, food and family.
The goal of the W2W’s visit was to educate and connect with legislators on the importance of agriculture and its impact on Hawaii’s families and communities.
“We were happy to have an opportunity for talking with legislators and their staff on the importance of agriculture in Hawaii, and discuss current issues we face,” said Michelle Starke, Bayer Hawaii Science and Environmental Outreach lead and a member of W2W. “Our meetings with these legislators were extremely positive and allowed us to identify common goals. We would like to continue having open dialogues with them and become a trusted resource for any questions they may have.”
The women of W2W come from a wide range of careers in agriculture that include compliance, conservation, fieldwork, human resources, government/community affairs, and research. This was also a learning opportunity for many of the women in the group who got the opportunity to sit in part of a hearing for a bill relating to agriculture.
In addition to educating and meeting with legislators and community leaders, the women of the W2W network dedicate time to volunteerism and community services projects that support families and children in need. They create learning and mentorship opportunities for women in agriculture and support Hawaii’s youth through programs like the Science Symposium for Girls, 4-H Expo, and Hawaii STEM Conference.