Business/In Brief • June 24, 2014

Farmers unenthused about food hub idea

LIHUE- A majority of Kauai farmers surveyed say they aren’t interested in a food hub, a concept that would create a centralized processing facility.

Seventy percent of the 23 farmers who responded to a survey in a county-funded study said they weren’t interested in collaborating with other growers to promote their products.

The concept for a food hub arose out of two studies to determine if it’s feasible for the county to boost the island’s food and agriculture industries by subsidizing a community kitchen and mobile or modular slaughter, chill and processing facility, the Garden Island reported Monday.

“Our rationale was that it makes sense to combine activities because you have a lower overhead instead of having it rely on one entity to carry all of the fixed costs – you can share it among four different components in a food hub,” said Jerry Ornellas, president of the Kauai Farm Bureau.