Master Farmer Workshop Series

Project Overview

Project Type: Professional + Producer
Funds awarded in 2011: $49,812.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2012
Region: Western
State: Hawaii
Principal Investigator:
Dave Elliott
Oahu RC&D

Annual Reports


  • Fruits: avocados, bananas, figs
  • Vegetables: cucurbits, peppers, sweet corn, tomatoes
  • Additional Plants: herbs, native plants, ornamentals
  • Animals: bees, fish


  • Crop Production: food product quality/safety
  • Education and Training: demonstration, farmer to farmer
  • Energy: solar energy, wind power
  • Farm Business Management: whole farm planning, new enterprise development, community-supported agriculture, marketing management, farm-to-institution, value added, agritourism
  • Natural Resources/Environment: soil stabilization
  • Pest Management: compost extracts, integrated pest management, prevention
  • Production Systems: agroecosystems, holistic management, organic agriculture, permaculture
  • Soil Management: organic matter
  • Sustainable Communities: ethnic differences/cultural and demographic change, local and regional food systems, urban agriculture, sustainability measures


    O'ahu RC&D hosted a series of field-based workshops featuring Master Farmers at their farms. Each workshop included a farm tour and a presentation by the Master Farmer on their experiences in sustainable agriculture. Topics included: Organic Farming, Agritourism, Value-Added Products, Direct Marketing and Aquaponics. Each workshop included additional specialist speakers on a related topic (e.g. marketing, food safety, etc.). Workshops targeted beginning and established farmers interested in learning more in order to improve their own operations, as well as other professionals from government, academia, agricultural consultants, Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs), and concerned nonprofit organizations and individuals.

    Project objectives:

    • Provide a forum to promote dialog between farmers and ranchers and specialists in the community, particularly those from the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR) at the University of Hawaii and the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Foster a knowledge transfer among agricultural producers and professionals on O?ahu.

    • Increase agricultural professionals'(government agents, agriculture consultants, SWCDs, NRCS, etc.) understanding of diversified, sustainable agricultural businesses on O?ahu.

    • Introduce farmers, especially beginning farmers and ranchers, to innovative and successful methods of sustainable agriculture.

    • Provide opportunities for producers to visit farms and farmers they may have heard of and gain a first-hand understanding of how these successful businesses operate.

    • Share information and successful sustainable agriculture techniques among those likely to use them via fact sheets, demonstrations, presentations and site visits.

    • Build our existing e-bulletin subscriber list to further on-going communication with farmers, ranchers and agricultural professionals about programs, opportunities, information and issues.

    • Establish a web-based forum for questions and answers concerning farming techniques, business strategies, pest control issues and other challenges facing O?ahu farmers.

    • Post questions and answers on our website, along with fact sheets from workshops to provide broader reach for the information.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.