Kaye Spector reported that the Kauai Council voted 5-2 to override their mayor's veto of a bill mandating disclosure of pesticide use and the presence of genetically modified crops by agrochemical companies on the Hawaiian island, and establishing buffer zones between these operations and schools, hospitals and residential areas. 


This action, taken on the part of local people, will have far-reaching global implications--especially for those of us who live in the USA.    

First and foremost is their example:  Act Local and Leverage Global Influence.  If Kauai can do it, then all local municipalities can follow suit.


Kauai's number one crop is seed corn which is grown on the west side of the island and exported to the USA mainland.  (Seed corn produces high quality ears of corn that are used as seed for other plantings.)

The largest USA coffee estate is located in Kauai.  The Kauai Coffee Company has 3,400 acres located on the south side of the island.  It produces an annual yield of 3.5 million pounds of coffee.  This amounts to 60% of Hawaii's annual yield for coffee.  (Of course, there are other crops grown such as bananas, guava, and taro but these are minor crops and primarily for local consumption.)

Beef cattle are raised on Kauai and exported to the USA mainland.  Speaking of local, there is now a Keep-the-Cattle-at-Home movement in Hawaii aimed at keeping more of their beef at home. Today only five to six percent of the Islands' 20,000 to 30,000 cattle stay in Hawaii.  The vast majority of the cattle are shipped to the USA midwest as 400 pound calves where they are fattened on grain diets, given harmones, antibiotics, and processed.  Ironically, after processing, some are shipped back to Hawaii for consumption.  By keeping more of their cattle at home, the local economy will reap more benefits.  The people of Hawaii are learning from what the commodity markets have done to the market value of their sugar and pineapple crops and are now moving to create larger, more stable and profitable local markets.


As I posted in response to this great news:  With our current globally-based food system, this means that many food items on our local grocery store shelves will be healthier for all of us--whether we live in Kalamazoo or Timbuktu, on Kauai or New York City. People who act locally (operating from the only real political vantage point that any ordinary citizen has) can leverage global influence.

Let's remember this great example. Local matters! In fact, Local is the heart for all our solutions. We can change the world and make it healthier and more secure merely by changing the rules that govern own experience of it at the local level.

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