Special Board Meeting
Kona Coffee Farmers Association
September 11, 2008, Yano Hall, Captain Cook
President Bruce Corker called the meeting to order at 2:40 PM.
Present: Board Members Bruce Corker, Sandra Scarr, Nancy Griffith, Mary Lou Moss, Joanie Rowe, Colehour Bondera, Deb Sims, Kathy Wood; Cea Smith (Webmistress and Chair, Promotions and Public Relations).
Absent: Board Members John McClure, Sandy Masterson, Suzanne Kustusch
Bruce thanked KCFA members who helped with the recent candidate forums, especially Sandra – planner/moderator, Mary Lou and Joanie, who provided coffee and cookies, and Joanie, timer. The Board also thanked Bruce for planning and making arrangements at Kealakehe.
County Council approved a resolution banning GMO coffee and taro from being tested or planted in Hawaii County.
Resolution requires two more readings to pass, and Bruce urged Board members to attend County Council sessions to support the ban.
Education Committee is presenting a workshop on wet mill practices on Sunday, September 28 at Kona Lisa/Cornerstone Farm from 2-4 PM. Workshop will be announced by e-mail to members. Ron and Mary Lake, owners, are concerned about limited parking, so Ken will encourage carpooling or parking and walking from some distance. Ken Sheppard will communicate with members about the workshop.
September 15 edition of Fortune contained a nice article on KCFA’s calendar, the Naked Truth, and outlined the case for truth-in-labeling of Kona coffee. Great promotion! Board congratulated the Calendar Girls for priceless publicity for the Kona coffee cause.
Deb Sims announced a new magazine for Kona & Kohala that will begin publishing soon. This may be another opportunity to publicize the calendar and our message.
Bruce recently sent out information on problems with twig borers. Board noted a growing problem with twig borers but did not take time for further discussion.
Board discussed the chronology of events in the funding, production, dissemination, and later objections that were raised about the KCFA DVD. To date, KCFA complied with the January 2008 request from the Hawaii Department of Agriculture and State Attorney General’s office to cease distribution of the DVD until some issues were resolved.
Despite repeated KCFA offers to settle matters, no resolution has been reached. Board considered several options about how to proceed.
After lengthy discussion of options, Board decided not to resume distribution of the DVD at this time. Rather, KCFA will continue to publicize the calendar, to publicize truth-in-labeling issues with the misuse of the Kona name on 10% blends, and to refer to the availability of the DVD on U-Tube. KCFA did not post the DVD on U-Tube, nor did any KCFA member direct the poster to put it there. Since the DVD has already been seen by thousands of viewers on U-Tube, KCFA publicity will merely refer to its availability there. Motion to this effect was made by Colehour, seconded by Sandra, and passed unanimously.
Control of Strawberry Guava
Bruce read a motion that was presented at the end of the last regular Board meeting. There was insufficient time to consider the motion, so it was deferred to the next meeting. Motion was to support Brenda Ford’s resolution to prevent the release of a scale to help control Strawberry guava in native forests until the spread has been tested on important agricultural crops (e.g., coffee, mac nuts, orchids) and until the USDA agrees to compensate fully any farmers whose crops are damaged by the scale.
Board discussed research done prior to the proposed release of the scale, the dangers of invasive species to native forests, and possible damage from release of the scale. The Board approved an amended motion to support Brenda Ford’s County Council resolution to stop the release of a scale to control strawberry guava until its spread has been tested on important agricultural crops, named in her resolution. Motion made by Bruce, seconded and amended by Colehour.
Authentication of Kona Coffee
Prior to the special meeting, Sandra sent out copies of a draft journal article by Dr. Jun Wang and colleagues at UHManoa on a method to authenticate the percentage of Kona coffee in coffee blends. The analysis of brewed coffees is quick and relatively inexpensive, so it can be useful to detect counterfeit “Kona” coffees and blends that contain less than the declared percentage of Kona coffee.
Sandra proposed to invite Dr. Jun to meet with KCFA board and members to present and discuss the study and its implications for Kona coffee farmers. Board agreed to invite them to a special meeting, to be coordinated with the Education Committee. Sandra will contact the Education Committee.
Meeting adjourned at 4:35 PM
Respectfully submitted, Sandra Scarr, Acting Secretary