Kamehameha Schools and Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation announce the return of Mahi‘ai Match-Up – an agricultural business plan contest dedicated to decreasing the state’s dependence on imports to create a sustainable Hawai‘i.
Three winning teams will receive an agricultural lease for up to five years of waived rent from Kamehameha Schools and a prize pool totaling $50,000 in start -up money from Ke Ali`i Pauahi Foundation to help make their winning agricultural business plan a reality.
“Last year was such a great success. The 2014 Mahi`ai Match-Up winners are preparing to begin their dreams of farming on some of Kamehameha Schools’ most valued agricultural lands on O`ahu, Hawai`i island and Moloka`i. We would like to mahalo our lead sponsor, Ulupono Initiative, for continuing its support of this unique contest that cultivates innovative and talented farmers,” said Keawe Liu, Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation’s executive director.
Kamehameha Schools began implementation of its strategic agricultural plan in 2009. Since then, Kamehameha Schools has invested millions of dollars toward infrastructure improvements such as roads, irrigation, fencing and security gates to increase local food production for the local market.
2015 Mahi`ai Match-Up Parcels
Pa`ala`a – North Shore, O‘ahu – 5.0 acres
Ke`ei- Kona Coast, Hawai`i island – 3.7 acres
Pāhoehoe- Hāmākua Coast, Hawai`i island – 9.5 acres
“Our partnership with Kamehameha Schools is a commitment toward sustainable agriculture and supporting local farmers,” Liu said. “We look forward to extending our reach to benefit the state of Hawai`i by providing agricultural scholarships and grants.”
All farmers, entrepreneurs, aspiring farmers or anyone with fresh, innovative ideas are encouraged to fill out an application for the contest beginning July 1 – August 15, 2014. To apply for the Mahi`ai Match-Up contest or for more information, visit www.pauahi.org/mahiaimatchup.
ABOUT KAMEHAMEHA SCHOOLS’ AGRICULTURAL INITIATIVE
The Kamehameha Schools Strategic Agricultural Plan, completed in 2009, lays a vision and strategy for management and use of over 175,000 acres zoned for agriculture. Through the plan, Kamehameha is committed to increasing market share of locally grown produce, meat and other food products; investing in agricultural support facilities and infrastructure like irrigation systems; restoring and revitalizing traditional agricultural systems like lo‘i, loko i‘a, and dryland field systems; and contributing to a sustainable, clean energy future by supporting projects like solar and wind energy.