Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Heritage Hatch, Fruit Trees, Honolulu Farmers Market, and New Things in the Works!

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

Sorry, we’ve missed a few posting dates over here.

Been pretty busy with another heritage hatch (a bunch of you probably got a phone call and now have some new chicks running around) and more fruit trees in.

The trees are all minimum of two years old, their roots protected in black plastic transportation sacks, ready to pick up and plant. We bring in a lot of dwarf trees because a lot of us live in urban areas and don’t have a lot of room.

Here is a list of trees currently in stock:

Dwarf Calamondin Lime (when we ordered kalamansi trees they said this was it!)

Dward Kaffir Lime

Dwarf Clementine Tangerine

Dward Chandler Pommelo

Manoa Sweet Acerola

Sharwil Avocado

Golden Nugget Loquat

Murta Jabotica Mulberry

Red Mountain Apple

Kumquat Surinam Cherry

We’ve also been running around with our new work with Hawaii Farm Bureau, helping to manage a few of the farmers markets around town. We’re busy with the new Honolulu Farmers’ Market at the Blaisdell get on its feet, that is the one that happens every Wednesday, 4-7 p.m. We are also helping to grow the one at Mililani High School that is on Sundays, 8-11 a.m.

We view our work with the farmers markets as an extension of our family’s efforts to help other families (most of the food growing farms in Hawaii are still family owned and operated) who are trying to keep the food growing systems in Hawaii alive.

We’ll keep you posted on more developments in this area of our work, we are working to create more opportunities for community to become more involved in this effort, because we know its been on everyone’s mind lately — our food security, our food safety, and how it can be a way to fortify our local economy.

Take care and hope you are having a good start to a great summer.

Ma`o Organic Farm Food Sovereignty Conference

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

One of our most favorite organizations, Ma`o Organic Farm, is organizing what will prove to be an incredible conference on food sovereignty over the weekend of June 12-13, 2009.

Here is a link to the schedule.

t is the first in a series of conferences with a focus on bringing youth together around these important issues, on several islands.

The conference is called ‘Āina Ho‘ōla o Ma‘ilikukahi and here is an excerpt from the Call to Action Narrative on the conference website:

“As evident by the global economic and climate crises, and in the socioeconomic conditions of our communities, there is a desperate need to take action in ensuring our island‘s movement towards self-sufficiency which calls upon ‘aina based action and kuleana based purpose. The ‘āina, as taught in the story of Hāloa, is that which feeds us, its younger sibling. The reciprocal responsibility then for kanaka is to return the favor. Here on O‘ahu, we have been overwhelmed with the pressures of a globalized food system that disconnects us from the ‘āina, maintains social and environmental injustice, and blocks our ability to feed ourselves. It is time for ‘āina reinvigoration and kanaka action.”

We’re just spreading the word. We thank Ma`o Organic Farm and the conference organizers for their leadership. If you can’t make it to the conference but would like to support their efforts, they are a non-profit and you can support them via website with donation or help on their monthly service days.

Sustainability Film Screening May 13th, Oahu

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

This came our way from an educator at Punahou who is doing a lot of good work with teaching active sustainability practices in our schools.

Spring 2009

The Punahou Sustainable Food Committee is hosting a spring “Food for Thought” event at Punahou on Wednesday, May 13th from 6-8:30 at Thurston Chapel, as part of our continuing discussion on Sustainability in our community. This year the Food for Thought series specifically explores the relationships of food and agriculture with sustainability. At the upcoming May event we will be screening Chris Taylor’s 2008 documentary film Food Fight, which according to the filmmaker is “a fascinating look at how American agricultural policy and food culture developed in the 20th century, and how the California food movement has created a counter-revolution against big agribusiness.” The movie explores the repercussions of the agribusiness model and ultimately considers the community’s role in the development of a more sustainable food system.

The evening will begin with a free tasting of dishes featuring local produce by Ed Kenny (‘86) of Town and Downtown as well as Pat Shea (’91) of Sweet Home Waimanalo. After the movie screening, we have invited a panel of speakers representing the various perspectives the movie explores (Dean Okimoto of Nalo Farms, Laurie Carlson of Honolulu Weekly and Slow Food Oahu, Dr. Ted Radovich of UH College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and Brian Schatz, the State Democratic Party Chair and CEO of Helping Hands Hawaii) to facilitate discussion of the many areas the film considers.

We hope everyone can make our “Food for Thought” movie night as part of our continuing discussion on Sustainability in our community. We are especially interested in having members of our Punahou community join us; please encourage your students and their parents to come. If you are wondering about potential classroom connections or have any questions about the event, please feel free to email me at

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Backyard Chickens in San Jose Mercury News

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Article in San Jose Mercury News:

San Jose family follow new popular trend of raising backyard chickens By Tiffany Carney Willow Glen Resident Posted: 05/04/2009 05:22:01 PM PDT

While most people don’t associate backyard chickens with city living, there’s a growing number of San Jose residents converting portions of their yards into coops to raise hens for fresh eggs.

A recent “chick sale” at Sam’s Downtown Feed and Pet Supply on West San Carlos Street attracted long lines, with people coming from as far as Hollister for a chance to pick out the perfect chicks to bring home.

“We’ve sold chickens for years, but in the past five years, we’ve sold more than we ever have,” said Lisa Blackford, who owns the feed store with her husband, Sam. “[Raising chickens] is just huge right now. This year, especially with the economy, our customers want to buy the chickens for the eggs.”

To read more:

New York Times Article on Wave of Pro-Chicken Ordinance Changes

Saturday, May 2nd, 2009

Yet another article published in New York Times about keeping backyard chickens in suburb, town, and city. This one about how some cities are changing ordinances by popular demand, increasing legal allowances, in some instances from zero to six.

I love the title.

Envisioning the End of ‘Don’t Cluck, Don’t Tell’

By Peter Applebome
Published: April 29, 2009
New Haven

In the modest backyard of Rosemarie Morgan’s 1890-era house, about a half-mile from Yale University, there is a small Buddha, azalea and forsythia, Japanese cherry and plum trees, and an Amish-made chicken coop with five residents — four who lay eggs and Gloria, who is barren but one heck of a watchdog.

The fowl are technically illegal under New Haven’s zoning code, which prohibited raising hens and other livestock when it was updated during the 1950s. But these days, many dozens of backyard hens are generally tolerated under the city’s informal enforcement program — call it “don’t cluck, don’t tell” — that mostly looks the other way. With urban fowl increasingly common, Alderman Roland Lemar has introduced legislation that would allow residents to raise up to six hens.

To read more:

Thank you KHON!

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Mahalo to the KHON2 team for sharing the backyard chicken revival with Hawaii viewers. Jai and Kenny came down on Friday early afternoon and we were on tv by the six o’clock news. A couple of people in the newsroom are already raising chicks, so KHON2 came to see what the growing interest was all about.

Anchor Joe Moore mentioned that the hatchery business is booming because of the downturn in the economy and people wanting to raise their own food.

No boom here. Like everyone else, we are managing to stay afloat by choosing to know how fortunate we are to be doing something we care about and to have the chance to meet great people everyday. We’re so lucky to have customers that are really good fun and interested in exploring all kinds of things – chickens, eggs, chickens as pets and companions, growing their own food, getting in touch with their inner farmer, adding chickens to the garden systems. Makes every day an adventure here at the hatchery.


Araucanas hatch date change: March 6th

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

“Oooops – wrong date published!
The araucanas and the rest of the heritage chicks are hatching on Friday, March 6!
Sorry if the last post confused anyone.

Araucanas Available Next Week

Friday, February 27th, 2009

We’re pretty excited. Our biggest hatch of heritage breeds ever is just around the corner and the eggs are looking good!
We’re hatching a bunch of extra Araucanas in case anyone is interested. Everyone loves this particular breed, so we knew we had to bring in more.
Araucanas are famous for their beautiful blue-green eggs. Martha Stewart has been a stalwart fan of Araucanas and include them in her private flock.
Araucanas were always thought to have originated in breeds found in the Arauco Penninsula in south central Chile. Recent archeological findings however, have linked DNA of this breed to ancient chicken remains found in Polynesia, in particular, Tonga. This supports a theory that seafarers from the Polynesian nations had been visiting South and North America centuries before the Europeans’ arrival, and that it was the Polynesians who brought chickens to the Americas.
It is pretty neat how this particular breed of chicken is turning out to play an important role in establishing this theory, a theory that could change how people view the civilizations and cultures of the nations of the Pacific.
As the view of a more progressive and proactive Polynesia gains wider acceptance in the western academic world, perhaps more attention will also be given to the traditional Polynesian arts of cultivating soil and ecosystem-based food growing, instead of plantation mono-cropping that has been superimposed on island climates and terrain.
But getting back to Aracaunas. They’re really good foragers, can be very independent and hearty. They are known for their calm natures and can be friendly if hand-reared as chicks.
Their looks are pretty unusual too, with ear tuffs (giving some the Grandpa Addams look) and they are rumplessness, meaning no tail. They are, however, blessed with very distinguished coloring and a nice sturdy bearing. They are also reliable egg-layers. Yum. You can truly make green eggs and ham.
Give us a call or send an email if you are interested some Araucanas, the hatch is on Wednesday, March 4.
That will make them Piscean Araucanas.
Extra special.

Hawaii SEED Talk on Food Security with Jeffrey Smith

Monday, February 16th, 2009

Our next post was going to be about chicken diapers, but something more important came up.
Hawaii SEED is sponsoring a state-wide tour with Jeffrey Smith, author of two very informative books on the health effects of GMO foods, “Seeds of Deception” and “Genetic Roulette.” He is also the founder of Institute for Responsible Technology and works internationally to educate communities about regaining control of our food supply from agricultural biotech companies.
For more information about the talks and about Hawaii SEED, see their website:
Talks have been organized on all islands, upcoming ones are:
Feb. 17, YBA Hall, HIlo, 6 p.m.
Feb. 21, Dragonfly Ranch, Kona, 5 p.m. Potluck, 7 p.m.
Feb. 22, Waialua Community Association, O’ahu. 6-7:30 p.m.
Feb. 23, Church of the Crossroads, University Ave., O’ahu. 6-7:30 p.m.
To give you an idea of who is also a part of this movement, and this is definitely a movement, the O’ahu part of this tour is also sponsored by Down to Earth, Slow Food O’ahu, Hawaii Health Guide, ‘Umeke Market, Kokua Hawai’i Foundation, Celestial Natural Foods, The Campaign for Healthy Eating in America.
In case you haven’t had a chance to get to know Hawaii SEED…
Hawaii SEED has been on the frontline here in Hawaii, conducting research, educating, organizing the public and farmers about the realities of the genetically engineered. They have published, to our knowledge, the only book (a info-packed 70 page pamphlet, “Facing Hawaii’s Future”) that clearly and substantially communicates the disturbing history of GMO in Hawai’i. They have also protected the islands in ways that cannot be measured. They have helped local farmers protect their crops from bio-tech neighbors, worked with Native Hawaiians and taro farmers to protect taro from patents, helped save our local coffee industry by preventing GMO coffee crops from coming in.
They have been persistently posing the tough questions to a lot of people who are not used to being questioned at all. Questions about the logic of taking a risk whose consequences have the potential to be as deeply irreversible to our bodies and our planet, as perhaps nothing else we have faced as a species. Is it logical to risk at that magnitude for profit or proprietorship of knowledge? At the cost of the entirety of the unique eco-system of the Hawaiian islands?
Thank you Hawaii SEED for always asking the tough questions.

First Heritage Hatch of 2009

Sunday, February 8th, 2009

We hope everyone is having a great start to a new year.
At the hatchery we’re preparing for our first heritage hatch for 2009!
A lot of people have been practicing a lot of patience, honing their wish lists, and making plans for building coops over the past months. We’ve gathered a lot of orders and will be happy to take yours if you are interested in the following breeds: Araucana, Silver Lace Wyandotte, Buff Orpington, Mille Fleur, Barred Plymouth Rock, Silkie, Java, White Crested Black Polish.
Remember, these are straight run, meaning that we are unable to designate or guarantee whether the chicks are male or female.
If you are interested, please call in your order!