Agricultural Resource Management
|Dear Water Users and Lessees,
We recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to anxiety and confusion around the world and in our islands. Our hearts and thoughts go out to each one of you during this time of uncertainty.
The Agricultural Resource Management Division will remain open, with limited staff per the Governor’s message to do our part to flatten the curve. However, our Irrigation workers will continue operating the irrigation systems, for as long as we have healthy workers and safe conditions.
These precautionary measures are being taken to help limit the spread of the virus and to support the people of our state during this time of crisis. If you need further assistance, please do not hesitate to call us or leave a message at (808) 973-9473 and someone will assist you as soon as they are able to. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
The Agricultural Resource Management Division administers the development and management of key agricultural resources.
Land and water are two ingredients essential to sustaining agricultural operations. In recognition of Hawaii’s limited land and water resources, the State Department of Agriculture is charged with preserving these important resources to ensure the viability of Hawaii’s diversified agricultural industry.
Through its Agricultural Resource Management Division, the department operates the State’s Agricultural Park Program. The major objective of this program is to assist people who are interested in leasing land for farming ventures by providing irrigation water, reasonably priced farmland with infrastructure and facilities to encourage competition within the industry.
The program is composed of three separate sub-programs:
Agricultural Water Use and Development Plan Update
An update to the Agricultural Water Use and Development Plan (AWUDP 2019 Update) is available online!
This update was developed by the Department of Agriculture in accordance with Hawaii Revised Statutes 174C-31(e). This plan provides an update to the original AWUDP published in 2003 and revised in 2004. Both the 2004 AWUDP, and the newly completed AWUDP 2019 Update, work together as a living document that will continue to be revised and updated in years to come.
The AWUDP 2019 Update is a tool that may be used by irrigation system managers, farmers, ranchers, planners, and others who rely on agricultural water to support diversified agriculture. Some highlights of the AWUDP 2019 Update include:
- Inventory of irrigation systems that were not covered in the 2004 AWUDP
- Update of irrigation systems that were covered in the 2004 AWUDP
- Update of the agriculture planning water demand rate and water demand forecasts
- Short- and long-term plan to manage irrigation systems in the state
Farmers are often interested in the Agricultural Water Demand Planning Rates. In this AWUDP Update, this value is revisited through extensive data gathering and research, including additional farm surveys and historical data. This AWUDP Update determined that multiple water demand planning rates are necessary to represent different conditions and crop types. These rates are summarized below.
- 3,900 gpd/acre for diversified agriculture for usable acreage that is 50% planted (e.g. leafy vegetables and truck crops)
- 800 gpd/acre for diversified agriculture for usable acreage that is 100% lands planted (e.g., nursery, feed, and forage crops)
- 8,100 gpd/acre for diversified agriculture, for usable acreage that is 50% planted, under drought conditions or in dry areas.
- 16,200 gpd/acre for diversified agriculture, for usable acreage that is 100% planted, under drought conditions or in dry areas.
- 8,000 gpd/acre for irrigated pastures (usable acreage that is 100% planted)
Please note that these water demand rates are for statewide planning purposes for agricultural water demand. If a specific site is being studied, a site-specific water demand analysis should be completed.
This 2019 AWUDP Update could not have been completed without the support and cooperation of the farmers, ranchers, and irrigation system owners/operators that took the time to talk with us about agriculture. The document contains input from over a hundred different farmers across the state, and we are greatly appreciative for their input and knowledge. The 2019 AWUDP Update would not be the same without them!
The AWUDP 2019 Update can be viewed at the following links:
If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Janice Fujimoto, HDOA Agricultural Resource Management Division at [email protected] or (808) 973-9473.
- East Maui Water Systems Improvement Project
In 2018, the Hawaiʻi State Legislature appropriated funding for capital improvement project (CIP) funding for plans, design, and construction for irrigation and water delivery systems in East Maui to support agricultural purposes. The legislative intent was to primarily support the small farmers in East Maui in furtherance of the State’s goals of food security and self-sufficiency.In May 2019, the Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture and its Project Team introduced the East Maui Water Systems Improvement Project (Project) to the community, and specifically the East Maui community. Phase 1 of the Project entailed the Project Team meeting with key stakeholders to gather relevant input to identify and assess potential projects for HDOA’s consideration. During this phase, we also conducted site visits of potential projects and held two public meetings to update the community and gather additional input.Based upon the community engagement, the Project Team conducted site assessments for the potential projects, taking into consideration the feasibility of completing each proposed project based upon a matrix of key factors. The Project Team prepared a prioritization matrix to assist HDOA in determining which proposed projects should proceed to the design phase. We are currently in the design and regulatory process phase to ensure timely use of the CIP funds.This process is detailed in the East Maui Water Systems Improvement, Proposed Project Summary Report dated December 16, 2019: https://hdoa.hawaii.gov/arm/files/2020/01/East-Maui-Water-Systems-Improvement-Proposed-Project-Summary-ReportCompressed.pdfShould you have any questions, please contact Janice Fujimoto with HDOA at 808-973-9473 or via email at [email protected]. or Dawn Chang with Kuiwalu at [email protected].
- Hamakua North Hilo Agricultural Cooperative – The HNHAC subleases state agricultural lands and manages about 100 small farms in the Pauuilo-Honokaa area. Go to the HNHAC website for more information on farm leases.
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Molokai Irrigation System
- Map 1 East Kauai Irrigation System
- Map 2 Kekaha Ditch Irrigation System
- Map 3 Kokee Ditch Irrigation System
- Map 4 Pioneer Mill Irrigation System
- Map 5 Waiahole Ditch Irrigation System
- Map 6 Lower Hamakua Ditch Irrigation System
- Map 7 Molokai Irrigation System
- Map 8 Upcountry Maui Irrigation System
- Map 9 Waimanalo Irrigation System
- Map 10 Waimea Irrigation System
- Map 11 East Maui Irrigation System
- Map 12 Kauai Coffee Irrigation System
- Map 13 West Maui Irrigation System