The Hawaii Crop Improvement Association and Hawaii Farm Bureau are sponsoring a contest to encourage farmers across the U.S. to share their personal stories (1,000 words or less) about the impact of biotechnology on their agricultural viability. One of the main purposes of this effort is to show Hawaii policymakers and stakeholders that the work of the seed industry in Hawaii directly benefits farmers throughout the country. The winners of this contest win an all-expense paid trip for 2 to Hawaii!
The winner will be expected to be able to travel to Hawaii in Feb. 2013 and speak to Hawaii policy makers and stakeholders. The deadline to submit your story is November 30, 2012.
In 1,000 words or less, describe how biotechnology has positively impacted the agricultural operations on your farm. Suggested areas to highlight include reduced pesticide use, increased yield, enhanced environmental stewardship (land, energy, water), and improved economic sustainability (lower production costs). Please be sure to include a short description about your farm.
How Stories Will Be Used
All submitted stories will be published in a “Views from the Farm” booklet to help educate the public about the important role of biotechnology as a tool to help farmers remain viable.
Farmers who submit the top 5 most compelling stories will each receive a one-week, all expenses paid trip to Hawaii for themselves and a guest (valued at $5,000 per farmer). Farmers will be asked to travel to Hawaii in late February 2013 and spend some of their time in the islands speaking personally about their stories to business leaders, lawmakers and the media.
Hawaii is home to a seed industry that contributes more than $250 million per year to the local economy. With operations on the islands of Kauai, Maui, Molokai and Oahu, the industry employs almost 2,000 employees, which represents 25 percent of the entire agricultural workforce in the state. Some of the world’s most important research in agricultural biotechnology is being grown in nurseries in Hawaii to address some of the greatest challenges being faced by farmers including drought, poor soil conditions, and disease. But the greatest risk to the viability of seed operations in Hawaii is an anti-GMO climate of extremism by activists who have a philosophical and religious opposition to the science. It’s time for people in Hawaii to learn the truth about how biotechnology is helping real farmers deal with real agricultural challenges.
How to Submit Your Story
Farmers can submit their stories online at www.hciaonline.com/why-biotech/farmers/. Stories should be uploaded as either a Word document or pdf. A headshot or other photo of the farmer and/or farm is also requested. Stories will be judged on the degree to which the farmer addresses the suggested biotech discussion areas and their impact on the viability of their operation, the uniqueness of the story being shared, and the ability of the story to educate non-farmers about the important role of biotechnology. All stories will be checked for factual information. Farmers are asked to please adhere to the 1,000 word limit.
Submission Deadline: November 30, 2012
For more information, please contact Alicia Maluafiti, Executive Director of the Hawaii Crop Improvement Association, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 808-224-3648. Aloha!