Maui County has gotten tough with illegal vacation rentals.
Aware of the growing number of illegal rentals intruding into residential and agricultural areas, the county Planning Department began aggressively enforcing zoning laws in early 2007 and shut down a number of operators.
Deputy Planning Director Ann Cua said the department gave illegal operators a reasonable time to close.
Later, in January 2009, in an attempt to bring vacation rentals into compliance, the Maui Council passed an ordinance allowing a limited number of bed-and-breakfasts to operate in various areas.
Since then some 33 rentals have received permits, including coastal residences in Paia and Kuau.
Former Kuau store manager Leona Nomura said she supports enforcement of zoning laws because neighborhood beaches have become crowded with visitors. She said people have been treating residences as vacation investments, then complaining when they are told to shut down.
“They’re trying to get laws to fit their needs,” she said. “They’re all about buying and selling.”
Cua said while there are still many illegal vacation rentals, the new ordinance has provided a path for those homeowners who want to legally operate their properties as B&Bs.
This tour will start at the University of Hawaii Maui Campus Culinary Academy for a “Behind the Scenes Tour” of the State of the Art facility and continental breakfast of locally sourced products. Once you’ve satisfied your appetite the tour will continue to the Hali’imaile Pineapple Company, where the staff shares a brief history of growing pineapple on Maui and how their farming operations has evolved today. See how pineapple is grown and learn the interesting facts about choosing the sweetest pineapple in the supermarket.
Then it’s off to lunch at the O’o farm, where a plethora of different crops are grown. Providing a unique culinary experience of using the freshest farm ingredients, prepared in creative ways that bring forth all the delicious flavors nature has to offer. After lunch, it’s on to Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm, where the tour starts on a sweet note of creamy Lavender Chocolate Gelato. Take the first and only Lavender walking tour and discover the “Language of Flowers”. Buy a Lavender Scone for the road and find out why these scones are so famous!
* Breakfast and Behind the Scenes tour of University of Hawaii Maui campus.
* Pineapple tour and tasting at Hali’imaile Pineapple Tours
* Gourmet Lunch and Tour at O’o Organic Farm
* Ali’I Kula Lavender Walking Tour and Dessert
**Advanced Reservations are required! Call 808-891-4604. Click here for more information.
LIHUE>> A Kauai County Council bill that would legalize hundreds of existing vacation rentals on agricultural lands is gaining ground.
The new bill received a county Planning Commission stamp of approval in April. It sailed through a first hearing at the county council last month.
The bill proposed by Councilman Tim Bynum would give vacation rentals operating on land zoned for agriculture an opportunity to apply for a permit.
The vacation rentals would have to have been operating before March 7, 2008 to qualify.
Two years ago, Kauai passed a law creating a path for vacation rental owners to legalize their operations by applying for permits.
But this measure specifically excluded those operating on agriculture land.
POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Aug 23, 2009
Wall Street is as far as you can get from the 8-acre Steelgrass Farm in Kauai where the main attraction is chocolate, but the trickle-down impacts have made for bittersweet returns.
"We just got turned down for a loan again," said Tony Lydgate, who helped his children, Emily and Will, purchase Steelgrass Farm in the 1990s. "Our revenues are in the low six figures, but we can’t even get a $20,000 line of credit."
The Lydgates, who have about half of all the cacao trees on Kauai, offer tours to supplement their farming income. Still, they need more capital to establish an agricultural cooperative that harvests cacao for commercial distribution.
"We can’t expand at the speed that we would like, too," Lydgate said.
The Lydgates are not alone. As the economy has slumped, more farmers in Hawaii and elsewhere have found that the crop of loans available to them has withered.
Here is the PDF file for the *Hawaii Ag-Tourism* Report.
Please visit the website for more information: http://www.nass.usda.gov/hi/
Mark E. Hudson, Director
USDA NASS Hawaii Field Office
1421 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96814-2512
Office: (808) 973-9588 / (800) 804-9514
Fax: (808) 973-2909
Hawaii?s ag-tourism valued at $38.8 million in 2006
The value of Hawaii?s ag-tourism related activities (see definition below) is pegged at $38.8 million for 2006, up 14 percent from the $33.9 million generated in 2003. There were 112 farms statewide that had ag-tourism related income during 2006, a 40 percent decrease from 2003 as fewer agricultural producers in Hawaii have opened-up their operations to visitors to the farm experience through ag-tourism activities. Interest in ag-tourism continues to be strong as 84 farms either are involved in agtourism activities in 2006, or planned to be in the future. The distribution of ag-tourism throughout Hawaii has become more concentrated during the past three years as Hawaii County now accounts for half of the farms with ag-tourism and 34 percent of the total value. Honolulu County had 12 percent of the farms and 37 percent of the total value. Kauai County accounted for 13 percent of the farms and the value was 16 percent of the total. Maui County accounted for 25 percent of the farms and was the only county showing a decline from 2003 with 13 percent of the total value.
Ag-tourism is a commercial enterprise on a working farm conducted for the enjoyment, education, and/or active involvement of the visitor, generating supplemental income for the farm. Activities such as producing and selling products directly from the farm, operating a bed and breakfast, conducting educational farm tours, offering horseback riding, festivals, concerts, and many other on-farm activities qualify as agtourism.
Just a reminder, the AgTourism Association meeting will have a polycom
linkup from the Kahului Extension office.? You are all invited to attend if
you’re interested in this.? I have heard from a couple of people who are
I’m sending what I was sent via email, below.? You don’t have to respond to
Diane; I already have made the reservations.
Jan McEwen 310 Kaahumanu Ave? Bldg 214 Kahului? HI?? 96732 (808) 244-3242 Maui Cooperative Extension Service CTAHR / UH-Manoa
March 3, 2007
We hope you all are excited for the next meeting to discuss the formation of
the AgTourism Association. We anticipate a jammed-packed session and an
opportunity for the committees to report their findings and make
recommendations for the future.
Each committee will be given the opportunity to share information and
respond to questions from the group. We would like to have the information
available to the group several days before the meeting so that everyone can
become familiar with the information in preparation for the meeting.
We’d like to have the committees send their final report to Diane Sands by
email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by March 8th.? We’ll consolidate the reports
into one email and send another group email before March 12th. Just as a
reminder, the committees are focusing on Organization, Funding, the
Definition of AgTourism and County Bill 148. Committee members will receive
a separate email from Diane requesting this information.
Monday, March 12 from 9:00am – Noon
CTAHR Conference Room
Facilitator: Donna Ching? email@example.com
Objectives: To regroup and share information gathered by committees. We also
would like to outline criteria for discussion with County Council when they
meet with Lani Weigert on March 19th.
If you are interested in Polycom (videoconferencing) available at the
extension offices on Oahu, Maui or Kauai, please RSVP to Diane Sands
(firstname.lastname@example.org) before March 7th. So far, we only have 1 person
reserved for the videoconferencing at the Gilmore location on Oahu. If we
don’t have attendees reserved for the other locations by March 7th, we will
cancel these locations.
We look forward to seeing you all again on March 12th and making further
progress with the AgTourism Association.
Kent Fleming, Donna Ching and Diane Sands
To regroup and share information gathered by committees. We alsowould like to outline criteria for discussion with County Council when they meet with Lani Weigert on March 19th.Polycom
?If you are interested in Polycom (videoconferencing) available at theextension offices on Oahu, Maui or Kauai, please RSVP to Diane Sands() before March 7th.? So far, we only have 1 person reserved for the videoconferencing at the Gilmore location on Oahu.? If wedon’t have attendees reserved for the other locations by March 7th, we will cancel these locations.? We look forward to seeing you all again on March 12th and making further progress with the AgTourism Association.? Sincerely, Kent Fleming, Donna Ching and Diane Sands
|Hawaii Ag-Tourism||Released: October 18, 2004|
The value of Hawaii’s ag-tourism related activities (see definition below) is pegged at $33.9 million for 2003, up 30 percent from the $26.0 million generated in 2000. There were 187 farms Statewide that had ag-tourism related income during 2003, a 48 percent increase from 2000 as more farmers in Hawaii have opened-up their operations to the public; exposing visitors to the farm experience. Interest in ag-tourism appears to be strong as an additional 145 farms either started ag-tourism activities in 2004, or planned to in the future.The distribution of ag-tourism throughout the State has become more concentrated during the past four years as Hawaii county now accounts for 48 percent of the farms with ag-tourism and 37 percent of the total value. Maui county accounted for 23 percent of the farms and 20 percent of the value. Honolulu county had 16 percent of the farms and 25 percent of the value while Kauai county accounted for the remaining 13 percent of the farms and saw a boost in value to 18 percent of the total.?
|County||Total farms||Farms with
to conduct ag-tourism
activities in the future
Ag-tourism is a commercial enterprise on a working farm conducted for the enjoyment, education, and/or active involvement of the visitor, generating supplemental income for the farm. Activities such as producing and selling products directly from the farm, operating a bed and breakfast, conducting educational farm tours, offering horseback riding, festivals, concerts, and many other on-farm activities qualify as ag-tourism.
Hawaii and Kauai counties show big gains
Compared to four years ago, the county of Hawaii increased the value of ag-tourism by 42 percent, the second largest gain among all counties. A 48 percent increase in the number of farms with ag-tourism activity contributed to Hawaii county’s rise in value. Honolulu county saw a 63 percent increase in farms with ag-tourism and an increase in value of 10 percent. Kauai county registered the largest percentage increase by nearly tripling its ag-tourism value to $5.9 million in 2003. Maui county registered the only decline in the State during this 4-year period as receipts from ag-tourism decreased from $7.3 million in 2000 to $6.8 million in 2003, a 7 percent decline.Large operations generate most of ag-tourism’s value
Farms of all sizes conducted ag-tourism activities during 2003. These ag-tourism farms ranged from those with total farm sales of less than $2,500 a year to those well over $1 million per year. Large operations ($250,000 or more in total annual farm sales), however, accounted for most of the dollar value of ag-tourism. The top 20 percent of all farms with ag-tourism generated 91 percent of the total revenue.?
Although only approximately 3 percent of all Hawaii’s farms engaged in ag-tourism during 2003, the 48 percent increase in the number of ag-tourism operations between 2000 and 2003 is evidence that many see this as an opportunity to supplement their income and manage the risks inherent in farming.
|Total value of
all farm sales
of farms 1/
|Number of farms
|Average value of
ag-tourism per farm
|Less than $2,500||1,402||49||44||898|
|$2,500 to $4,999||715||4||14||3,616|
|$5,000 to $9,999||914||15||108||7,182|
|$10,000 to $24,999||1,060||21||188||8,934|
|$25,000 to $49,999||506||22||416||18,891|
|$50,000 to $249,999||563||38||2,447||64,395|
|$250,000 to $499,999||105||7||1,298||185,429|
|$500,000 to $999,999||62||8||3,218||402,250|
|$1,000,000 or more||71||23||26,137||1,136,376|
1/ 2002 Census of Agriculture.
Sale of farm products leading source of ag-tourism income
Revenue from ag-tourism, which includes many various activities, was broken down into several categories. On-farm sales direct to farm visitors was the leading category, with $13.5 million, followed by retail sales (products from other farms or souvenir items), outdoor recreation, accommodations (bed and breakfast, meeting rooms, etc.), education, entertainment, and others.
|Item||Type of ag-tourism activity||Totals 3/|
|Outdoor recreation||Educational tourism||On-farm
1/ Products from other farms or souvenir items. 2/ Bed and breakfast, meeting rooms, etc. 3/ Unduplicated total number of farms.
Most ag-tourism operations plan to maintain or expand activities in the future
Seventy-nine percent of all ag-tourism operations in 2003 were planning to maintain or expand their operations in the future. Only 4 percent, or 8 farms, of the total indicated that they will discontinue or reduce their ag-tourism activities in the future. The 2003 Ag-tourism survey also showed that flower and/or nursery operations remained the most popular type of ag-tourism operation. Coffee and fruit farms were tied at a distant second.
|Year||Future ag-tourism plans||Total|
|Expand ag-tourism activities||Remain at
|Discontinue or reduce
|?||Number of ag-tourism farms|
|Year||Type of farm 1/||Total|
|?||Number of ag-tourism farms|
1/ A predominate commodity was designated for farms reporting more than one commodity.
– Busiest time of the year. . .slightly more than half, 51 percent, of the operations that reported ag- tourism activity in 2003 said that business was the same year round. Of the remaining responses, winter and summer were identified as the most significant peak periods, at 22 percent and 21 percent, respectively. Spring came in at 4 percent and fall at 2 percent.- Where do ag-tourism visitors come from?. . .mainland visitors constituted the highest percentage of ag-tourism visitors, at 53 percent, followed by Hawaii residents at 35 percent, and international visitors at 12 percent.?
– Problems faced by ag-tourism operators. . .farmers were asked to rank problems or obstacles they faced in start-up or operation of ag-tourism activities. Funding was ranked as the number one problem, followed by conflicts/interference with on-going farm activities. Marketing was the third most common problem, and liability issues and insurance was fourth. Other problems ranking in order were zoning restrictions, labor, building permits, signage restrictions and community/cultural oppositions.
– Point of sale…many operations received orders for products related to ag-tourism after the visitors returned home. Out of these, 74 percent of operations reported 0-25 percent of their sales from off-site orders, 21 percent of operations reported 26 to 50 percent, and 5 percent said that over 50 percent of their ag-tourism related sales came from off-site orders.
The Hawaii Agricultural Statistics office conducted a special survey of Hawaii’s farmers to obtain the results used in this report. We appreciate the cooperation of Hawaii’s agricultural producers who completed the survey questionnaire. A special note of thanks goes to the Agricultural Development Division of the Hawaii Department of Agriculture and the University of Hawaii’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources for their support on this project.