Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Monday, May 4, 2015

Rock falling from the wall of Halema`uma`u Crater into the Overlook Crater's lava lake caused an explosion yesterday afternoon.
Photo from USGS/HVO
VOLCANIC ACTIVITY CONTINUES at the summit of Kilauea Volcano.
      A collapse of a portion of the wall of Halema`uma`u Crater impacted the lava lake yesterday afternoon at 1:20 p.m. and triggered an explosive event, which deposited fist-size clasts around the rim of Halema`uma`u Crater, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologists reported.
      HVO seismologists reported that a magnitude-3.6 earthquake in the upper East Rift Zone occurred this morning at 4:42 a.m. and was widely felt in the Volcano Village area.
      The lava lake level has been at, or near, the rim of the Overlook crater over the past day, but the lake did not overflow onto the floor of Halema`uma`u Crater during that period. Yesterday afternoon, the lava lake level was measured at roughly three yards above the original, pre-overflow floor of Halema`uma`u Crater. The recent overflows have accumulated and built the rim of the Overlook crater up several yards above the original floor. This morning, the lava level is close to the rim of the Overlook crater.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

David Waldman confirmed the increase sophistication
of coffee buyers.
KEEP THE QUALITY HIGH, coffee experts and statewide Hawai`i Farm Bureau President and Ka`u Coffee Festival organizer Chris Manfredi urged coffee farmers yesterday. They were speaking at Ka`u Coffee College, the last event of ten days of festival experience. 
      David Waldman of Rojo’s Roastery in Princeton and Lambertville, N.J. talked about increased sophistication of coffee buyers in the high end market. “There is no fooling people anymore about quality of coffee. They will pay high prices for high quality.” He said that ten years ago people didn’t want the citrus flavors of lighter roasts, but now they want to experience these specific qualities. He said that people are using less milk with coffee, showing they want to taste it. He said customers will pay $5 for a pour-over, but the coffee has to be excellent. He urged farmers to allow buyers to visit with them, see the farms, the soil, the trees and to sit with them to cup coffee and be open to suggestions.
      Andy Newbom, a coffee buyer from San Diego, talked about tough competition in pricing, with excellent coffee coming from countries where there is cheaper land and less expensive labor than in Hawai`i. He said this makes it all the more important for Ka`u to preserve the highest of standards and to share the farmers’ stories that connect with coffee drinkers and also to distinguish Ka`u from Kona coffee. He shared his saying, “Never give customers what they want. Only give them what you do best.” He said it is not resasonable to think that a coffee business can be sustained by riding on the fame of Hawai`i as a visitor destination. “You have had it easy,” he said.
Andrea Kawabata, of University of Hawai`i, encourages Ka`u farmers
to methodically manage the Coffee Berry Borer problem
to save Ka`u's excellent reputation. Photo by Julia Neal
      Andrea Kawabata, from University of Hawai`i, also encouraged high quality. “Once you have tarnished your reputation, it is hard to get it back,” she said. She urged farmers to look toward long-term rather than short-term profit. She said that coffee berry borer treatments have to be planned carefully. “If CBB subsidies (funding) doesn’t come in, spray anyway,” she urged. Farmers were told to save the receipts for possible reimbursement.
      Dr. Andrew Hetzel talked about many defects that can degrade coffee beans. He talked about sour beans, withered beans, immature, broken and chipped beans all being detriments to holding onto a reputation for specialty coffee. Defects can come from farming, harvesting, processing, transportation and storage methods. All of these have to be handled with the utmost care to keep coffee reputation and prices high, he said. He encouraged farmers to frequently cup their own coffee and those of other farmers and coffees from around the world and to learn to detect defects and how to prevent them.
      Manfredi encouraged farmers to keep up with treatments for CBB. “Don’t wait. The bugs don’t know that the grant is coming.” He suggested strip-picking at the end of the season and to spray early. He also talked high prices. “For us to sell Ka`u, we need the quality.”
      Farmers were urged to become involved with the Hawai`i Coffee Association’s annual convention this summer. See www.hawaiicoffeeassoc.org.

Andy Newborn talked about tough competition in coffee pricing. Hawai`i Farm Bureau
President Chris Manfredi, left, urged farmers to keep up the quality.
Photo by Julia Neal
A BILL THAT WOULD PHASE OUT the non-dedicated agricultural use assessment program and replace it with a short-term dedicated agricultural use assessment program is on Hawai`i County Council Finance Committee’s agenda tomorrow at 1 p.m. 
      According to Bill 317, the purpose of the agricultural use assessment program is to encourage continual and committed agricultural use of lands.
      “In order to achieve this purpose, the Council finds it necessary to phase out the non-dedicated agricultural use assessment program and replace that program with a short-term dedicated agricultural use assessment program,” the bill reads. “This ordinance provides for a three-year transition period to provide ample opportunity to implement the transition to the short-term agricultural use dedication program and to provide ample opportunity for those seeking to participate in the short-term agricultural use dedication program to make any necessary adjustments in their farming operations. The requirements of this three-year short-term agricultural use dedicated program parallels those of the existing ten-year dedicated agricultural use program.
      “This ordinance does not propose any changes to the existing ten-year agricultural use dedicated program. Thereafter, those parcels not in a three-year short-term dedicated agricultural use program or the ten-year dedicated agricultural use program shall be assessed at market value.”
Dr. Andrew Hetzel explained the importance of reducing defects of coffee going
to market, from husks in green beans to chipped, dried out and unripened beans.
He said coffee enthusiasts are becoming more sophisticated in their ability
to taste specialty coffee. Photo by Julia Neal
      The bill defines commercial agricultural activity as “use of property to generate income, monetary gain or economic benefit in the form of money or money’s worth of a minimum $2,000 annual gross income per family operation.”
      Ka`u residents can participate in this and other committee meetings tomorrow. Videoconferencing is available at Ocean View Community Center, and the meetings are also streamed live at hawaiicounty.gov. Click on Council Meetings.
      Public Works and Parks & Recreation meets at 9 a.m.; Public Safety & Mass Transit, 9:30 a.m.; Agriculture, Water & Energy Sustainability, 10 a.m.; and Finance, 1 p.m.
      The full council meets Wednesday at 9 a.m. All meetings take place at Council Chambers in Hilo.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN for Volcano Rain Forest Runs on Saturday, Aug. 22.
      All runs start and finish at Cooper Center on Wright Road in the heart of Volcano Village and traverse the quaint village roads through the native rain forest and ranch lands with stunning views of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa in the distance.
      The Half Marathon is the final race of the Triple Crown Hawai`i, along with the Big Island International Marathon and the Kona Marathon. Medals are awarded at the Volcano Rain Forest Runs.
      Entry fees for runners who register by June 1 are $65 for the Half Marathon, $40 for the 10K and $25 for the 5K. Fees increase after June 1 and again after Aug. 1.
      For more information and to register, see volcanorainforestruns.com.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

THE PUBLIC IS INVITED to Ka`u Scenic Byway Committee’s meeting today at 5 p.m. at Na`alehu Methodist Church. Agenda items include an update on the Na`alehu Park kiosk, communications from the state Scenic Byway Committee and locations of proposed lava flow signs in the Kahuku area.
      For more information, email richmorrow@alohabroadband.net.

CINCO DE MAYO BUFFET TAKES PLACE tomorrow from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Kilauea Military Camp’s Crater Rim Café in Hawa`‘i Volcanoes National Park. Cost is $18 per adult and $9 per child $9. KMC is open to authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply; Call 967-8371 for more information.

The history of roads in Hawai`i's national parks is the topic tomorrow
at After Dark in the Park. Photo from NPS
THE TOPIC AT AFTER DARK IN THE PARK tomorrow is Lying Lightly on the Land: National Park Service Roads in Hawai`i. Historian Dawn Duensing has studied Hawai`i’s scenic roads since 1999, when she prepared a history of roads in Hawai`i National Park for the Historic American Engineering Record, a division of the National Park Service. This illustrated presentation highlights challenges, construction techniques and design principles involved in building Hawai`i’s national park roads, while explaining why these roads are important in contemporary Hawai`i. Building on her extensive NPS experience and research, Dawn’s new book, Hawai`i’s Scenic Roads: Paving the Way for Tourism in the Islands, examines the political, economic, social and environmental history of the islands’ most renowned scenic drives, including those at Hawai`i Volcanoes and Haleakala National Parks. 
      The program begins at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. $2 donations support After Dark programs. Park entrance fees apply.


See kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.pdf and

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