KONA COFFEE FARMERS ASSOCIATION BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING, November 17, 2015 CTAHR Conference Room, Kainaliu
Board Members Present: Tom Butler, Anita Kelleher, Bruce Corker, Kurt Schweickhard, Colehour Bondera, Chris Coleman, Judy Schuman, Suzanne Shriner, Cea Smith, Allan Wang.
100% Kona Coffee provided by Tom Butler. Thank you, Tom. Coffee next month: Bruce Corker
Call to Order at 3:05 pm by President Tom Butler.
Questionable Coffee Labeling—Tom circulated guestroom coffee packets he picked up from a stay at the Honolulu Airport Hotel. The coffee is roasted and packaged by “Hawaiian Isles Kona Coffee Co.” under the brand name “Hawaii Coffee Roasters Co.” The word “Hawaii” appears repeatedly, along with a smiling Polynesian maiden and an invitation to “Wake up to Paradise”. On the back the ingredients are listed as “100% Pure Arabica Coffee”, but not a word as to the origin of the coffee.
Consent Agenda—No questions were raised about the new member listed in the Membership Committee report or about the minutes of the Executive Session or the Board meeting of October 20, 2015. Bruce requested that the “CBB Task Force” item be moved from the Consent Agenda and added to “Old Business”. With that change, Kurt moved, with a second from Suzanne, to accept the Consent Agenda (Minutes and Committee Reports). Motion passed.
Treasurer’s Report—Kurt reported on and reviewed the Profit and Loss for October 2015 and the Balance Sheet as of November 12, 2015. He also reviewed an accounting of “Coffee Art Stroll 2015 Results”. Bruce moved, with a second from Chris, to accept the Treasurer’s Report. Motion passed.
Presentation by Lee Sugai—Kona coffee farmer and KCFA member Lee Sugai spoke to the Board about his candidacy for the USDA’s Hawaii County Farm Service Agency’s advisory committee. The committee provides producer input on USDA money and resources for the Hawaii County. Lee believes that West Hawaii farmers have been under-represented on the committee and he requested KCFA support. Bruce moved, with a second from Cea, that the KCFA endorse Lee Sugai’s candidacy and encourage KCFA members to cast ballots for him. Motion passed.
EXPO—After discussion of organization, timing and location of the KCFA's 2016 Kona Coffee Exposition, Kurt moved, with a second from Colehour, to postpone the EXPO from its traditional January scheduling until the spring with the location of the event to be determined. Motion passed. Tom will send a letter to past EXPO vendors alerting them that the event will be in the spring.
Nominations Committee—Tom reported that two members responded to his email sent last week asking those with interest serving on the Board to let the Nominations Committee know of their interest. The KCFA membership list will be emailed to each Board member-with a request that each review the KCFA membership list and send the Nominations Committee the names of two or three members who you believe would be a strong Board member—and may have interest in serving on the Board. The Nominations Committee will contact those suggested to discuss Board candidacy.
By-Laws Amendments—Tom presented three By-Laws amendments for recommendation from the Board to the AGM for adoption.
1—Email Votes—We have been advised by HANO that state law requires that Board votes conducted by email must be unanimous. Our current By-Laws do not reflect that requirement. Cea moved, with a second from Judy, that the Board recommend to the Membership to add the following sentence to Article VI.6.2: “Adoption of matters voted on by email must be by a unanimous vote of those voting.”
2—Voting Membership—Tom noted that in March the Board had made a determination to recommend to the Membership that the By-Laws be amended to make explicit the requirement that voting membership requires support of “100% Kona coffee and the objectives of the KCFA”. The current By-Laws explicitly state this requirement for Associate and Supporting Business memberships. Kurt moved, with a second from Colehour, that the Board recommend to the Membership that the first sentence of Article III.1.1 be amended to read: “Any coffee farmer who supports 100% Kona coffee and the objectives of the KCFA and who reached the age of eighteen (18) years may become a voting member of KCFA, upon payment of annual dues……” Motion passed.
3-Proxy Voting at Board/Executive Committee Meetings—Current By-Laws prohibit proxy voting at General or Special Meetings of the Membership, but do not explicitly address whether proxy voting at Board or Executive Meetings is allowed. Bruce moved, with a second from Judy, to recommend to the Membership that the following be added to Article VI.5.4: “Proxies are allowed in cases when a Board or Executive Committee Member has provided a written proxy authorizing another member to vote on his/her behalf on a subject identified in the proxy.” Those supporting the motion noted that Board Members should be able to represent the membership on important issues through proxy votes when inevitable absences occur. Those opposing the noted that absent members would not have the benefit of discussion of the issue in the meeting. Motion passed. Five voting “yes”—Anita, Bruce, Colehour, Allan, Judy. Four voting “no”—Suzanne, Chris, Kurt, Cea.
CBB Task Force Committee—Suzanne reported that she and the Task Force Shipping Committee Chair Ralph Gaston had discussed issues related to conflicts between the formally adopted quarantine rules and the position of Amy Takahashi on shipping untreated Hawaii County green coffee to, or transshipping through Oahu, without inspection and permitting. Since the August 20 meeting in Honolulu with HDOArepresentatives there has been no communication with Ms. Takahashi from the Task Force—and nothing has been obtained in writing setting forth the basis for Ms. Takahashi’s positions. Kurt reported that the Task Force has not meet since June. Kurt’s efforts to have a meeting scheduled in October were unsuccessful. Kurt advised that KCFA’s membership payment has not been submitted—pending a determination of whether the Task Force will continue and the scope of its operations.
December Meeting—There was discussion as to whether there should be a December Board meeting. The consensus was that the December 15 meeting should be held in order to, among other thing, address the organization of the AGM (January 8) and planning for the Expo. Kurt and Cea will be on a committee to organize the AGM. Chris, Colehour, and Bruce will work on developing recommendations re EXPO for presentation at the December meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 4:52 pm.
Submitted by Bruce Corker, Secretary
Committee Reports for Tuesday November 17 2015
Education – Bondera and Shriner
Executive Committee (Pres. V-Pres, Sec. Treas. and Past-Pres.)
Finance - K. Schweickhard
October Financials circulated to the Board: Balance Sheet and Profit & Loss.
Fundraising/Social Events BOARD
Kona Heritage – C. Bondera
*Branding –Corker and Smith
1--Aulani Disney Resort--After KCFA received member Kim Schneider's letter setting forth her concerns about another Oahu luxury resort serving deceptively labeled "Kona Blend" in guestrooms, we encouraged Kim to authorize publication of the letter in the November "Independent Voice". She agreed. The Branding Committee will follow up by contacting the Aulani and Disney to encourage them to change their coffee-in-guestrooms practice.
2--SlowFood's Ark of Taste--The Branding Committee has now taken initial steps toward its nomination of Kona Coffee for inclusion in SlowFoodUSA's Ark of Taste. The Ark of Taste is an honorary list of US food products that are outstanding in terms of taste and that are culturally and historically linked to specific regions or localities. We are hopeful that SlowFood's Hawaii Region will join in supporting the nomination.
Legislative-Corker Legislative Committee Report—For November 17, 2015 Meeting
Sen. Mike Gabbard, the newly appointed Chair of the Hawaii State Senate’s Water, Land and Agriculture Committee, requested KCFA feedback on agriculture issues in the lead up to the 2016 legislative session. On October 21, in response the KCFA Legislative Committee provided Sen. Gabbard input on the following two matters:
1—Coffee Labeling Reform: Last year the Hawaii County Council unanimously adopted Resolution No. 501-14 requesting the Legislature to reform the State’s coffee labeling law. Specifically, the Resolution called for a minimum 51% genuine content in blends and identification of origin of the foreign-grown content on the label. Last session Rep. Richard Creagan introduced HB387 seeking the reforms requested by the Hawaii County Council. For the 2016 Session, we requested that Sen. Gabbard introduce in the Senate and work for the enactment of a companion bill to Rep. Creagan’s HB387.
2—Beauveria bassina Subsidy Bill: In 2014 the Legislature passed, and the governor signed into law, HB1514. That measure mandated the Hawaii Department of Agriculture to set up and administer a subsidy program for farmers using the fungus Beauveria bassiana (Bb) to combat the coffee berry borer (CBB) infestation in the State. The bill provided $500,000 in funding for fiscal year 2014-2015 to the HDOA for the subsidy program. The program was to run from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2019—with subsidy rates to farmers of 75% of the cost of Bb for the first two years and 50% for the final three years. However, the HDOA has failed to follow the Legislature’s mandate. To date, coffee farmers have not received a single dollar from the HB1514 subsidy program. Close to a year and a half of the two-year period of 75% subsidies has passed. We asked Sen. Gabbard and the WL&A Committee to investigate and to report its findings as to why the Legislature’s mandate set forth in HB1514 has not been followed.
There are 278 Voting members, 33 Supporting business members and 47 Associate members. Total 358 members.
New Associate member: Mary Albin,PO box 42,Ninole, Hi 96773,(808) 987-7549 [email protected]
- Ad for Keola Magazine November/December
- Sent Newsletter
- ‘About Town” for Stroll and media outlets including Radio
- First Press Release about Stroll
- Second one once we present awards
- Prepared for the 2015 coffee and Art Stroll. We had the biggest attendance ever with over 2500 “Strollers”
- 35 Farms participated and all seemed excited and happy with their day We had 15 volunteers who worked tirelessly.
- KCFA Booth looked great and having the Shack present really added to our display. It has not been there the last couple of years. Thanks you Suzanne for that. The Chefs had fun and all would love to return. They had a tough time judging. So many great coffees to taste. We tried a .5 system instead of just grading 1-5 with 5 the highest. They used 3.5, 4.5 etc. hoping we would not have too many ties. We ended up with seven so that did not work. I am out of ideas unless we have finalists and a second tasting which seems like a lot to ask.
- I brought the leftover mac nuts from the fundraiser dinner and they sold out which was great!The Holualoa Village Association Board would like for me to return next year. Now that I have the experience it will be easier as I am organized and now what to expect. I would be happy to Chair it for KCFA if the board wishes. I would like to see someone take over the Booth and make a nicer display with table cloths and added items. We could use hats in another color and new shirts.
- Thank you Tom and Buddha’s Cup for the coffee donations.
- I cannot run the booth and walk with the Chefs and oversee 35 farmers set up. I use to take over the booth display for MaryLou. So we need a volunteer who will put some effort into that.
- Kurt did an excellent job as always tracking sales and making sure it all ran smoothly
- Presented “People’s Choice Award” 11/12 in Holualoa to Holualoa Organics Farm
Pest & Disease-B. Smith
*CBB Task Force-K. Schweickhard
- Spent time working on new web site conversion with KCFA programmer
- Sent KCFA Emails to all Members: 1) Mill Expert Seminar, 2) Soil Health Workshop, 3) November Independent Voice, 4) Board Nominees Wanted, 5) Coffee and Art Stroll info. POSTED on Website: 1) Soil Health Workshop and Flyer, 2) November 2015 –The Independent Voice,
- 3) Board Nominee letter, etc. Sent email to every Classified placer asking whether to renew or not
Board Development- Executive Committee
HDOA Grant- C. Bondera