HONOLULU (KHON2) — People filled the state Capitol rotunda on the opening day of the legislature for the past decade to highlight the importance of agriculture and Hawaii’s farmers. This year, however, is about bringing agriculture into your home.
As legislators start a new session on Wednesday, Jan. 20, kalo, the staple food of Hawaii, returns to the forefront of their surroundings.
Before it was Ku’i at the Capitol.
Organizers these days want to strengthen the community by helping people to grow their own kalo — their own food — at home.
“Over the last 11 years, what we did was built up the base of people that have the capability of bringing ku’i’ai into their home,” says Daniel Anthony, event organizer of Opening Day 2021 State Capitol.
“And so, now that you can ku’i at home, what’s the next step? It’s to secure your food system by planting it,” Anthony said.
10,000 Huli (Kalo-cuttings) and 10,000 Hae Hawaii (Hawaiian flags) will be distributed via a drive-thru on Beretania Street.
This will front the statue of St. Damien at the Hawaii Capitol building.
“You know, we are in a pandemic and the safest place to make poi is in the safety of your own home with your own family,” he said. “Also, it’s a different kind of need that we have, yah? It’s to secure your food system by planting at home.”
Home gardens can range from the backyard to a pot on the balcony.
“You know, there’s a reason why Father Damien is in front of the capitol. Its to inspire us, to remind us that we through Akua, through Malama Aina, that we can Malama kekahi i kekahi (care for one another).”
The “Huli and Hae Hawaii Farm Goods Drive” is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 20,, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For all the information and if you want to donate to the cause, visit the Instagram page @manaai, or click here.