Hawaii News Releases

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Hawaii News Releases

State Executive Director

Shirley Nakamura

Shirley Nakamura

Read Shirley Nakamura'

State Office Address

300 Ala Moana Blvd.
Room 5-108
Honolulu, Hawaii 96850
(808) 541-2600 ext. 2

Please submit all media inquiries for FSA to FPAC.BC.press@usda.gov.

  1. USDA Announces Dates for Conservation Reserve Program Grasslands Signups

    Wed Jul 14, 2021 12:00 AM

    HONOLULU, Hawaii, July 12, 2021 –– Agricultural producers and landowners in Hawaii and the Pacific Basin can apply for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Grasslands signup from today until August 20. This year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) updated signup options to provide greater incentives for producers and increased the program’s conservation and climate benefits, including setting a minimum rental rate and identifying two national priority zones.

    The CRP Grassland signup is competitive, and USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will provide for annual rental payments for land devoted to conservation purposes. 

  2. Enrollment Period Begins for USDA’s Reimbursement Transportation Cost Payment Program

    Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:42 PM

    Program Helps Offset Transporting Costs for Farmers and Ranchers Outside the Contiguous U.S.

    HONOLULU, Hawaii, July 9, 2021 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Hawaii and the Pacific Basin opened enrollment today for the Reimbursement Transportation Cost Payment Program (RTCP) for fiscal year 2021. The enrollment period begins July 12 and will run through Sept. 3.

    “RTCP helps U.S. farmers and ranchers offset a portion of the cost of transporting agricultural products over long distances,” said Shirley Nakamura, Farm Service Agency (FSA) Acting State Executive Director. “This program helps U.S. farmers and ranchers outside the 48 contiguous states who are at a competitive disadvantage when transporting agriculture products to market.”

  3. USDA Announces Listening Session on Impacts of COVID-19 on New Farmers

    Tue May 4, 2021 12:00 AM

    WASHINGTON, May 4, 2021 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced a virtual listening session for beginning farmers and ranchers to learn how COVID-19 impacted their farming operations and to get their feedback on USDA assistance. The listening session will take place on May 6, 2021, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Eastern time.

    “We invite beginning farmers and ranchers to share their experiences in navigating USDA’s resources for assistance after the pandemic,” said Gloria Montaño Greene, USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation.

  4. USDA Announces Funding Available to Organizations to Assist Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers under Pandemic Assistance for Producers Initiative

    Mon Apr 5, 2021 12:00 AM

    WASHINGTON, April 5, 2021— The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) today announced the availability of $2 million to establish partnerships with organizations to provide outreach and technical assistance to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers. The funding was made possible by USDA’s new Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative, an effort to distribute resources more broadly and to put greater emphasis on outreach to small and socially disadvantaged producers impacted by the pandemic. Today also marks the reopening of FSA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) signup as part of the Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative. Farmers and ranchers will have at least 60 days to apply or make modifications to existing CFAP 2 applications.

  5. Maui County Farm Service Agency is Accepting Emergency Conservation Program Applications

    Mon Apr 5, 2021 12:00 AM

    (Kahului, Hawaii), April 1, 2021 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) County Executive Director James Robello today announced that Maui County is accepting applications for the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) to address damages from recent flooding (disaster ID 1780). ECP signup will begin on April 1, 2021, and end on April 30, 2021.

    The approved ECP practices under this authorization include removing debris from farmland.

  6. After Identifying Gaps in Previous Aid, USDA Announces ‘Pandemic Assistance for Producers’ to Distribute Resources More Equitably

    Wed Mar 31, 2021 03:51 PM

    USDA Reopens Program Sign-Up to a Larger Share of Producers with Plans to Expand Outreach and New Programming

    Washington, D.C., March 24, 2021 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that USDA is establishing new programs and efforts to bring financial assistance to farmers, ranchers and producers who felt the impact of COVID-19 market disruptions. The new initiative—USDA Pandemic Assistance for Producers—will reach a broader set of producers than in previous COVID-19 aid programs. USDA is dedicating at least $6 billion toward the new programs. The Department will also develop rules for new programs that will put a greater emphasis on outreach to small and socially disadvantaged producers, specialty crop and organic producers, timber harvesters, as well as provide support for the food supply chain and producers of renewable fuel, among others. Existing programs like the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) will fall within the new initiative and, where statutory authority allows, will be refined to better address the needs of producers.

  7. USDA Temporarily Suspends Debt Collections, Foreclosures and Other Activities on Farm Loans for Several Thousand Distressed Borrowers Due to Coronavirus

    Wed Jan 27, 2021 01:54 PM

    HONOLULU, HAWAII, Jan. 27, 2021 – Due to the national public health emergency caused by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced the temporary suspension of past-due debt collections and foreclosures for distressed borrowers under the Farm Storage Facility Loan and the Direct Farm Loan programs administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). USDA will temporarily suspend non-judicial foreclosures, debt offsets or wage garnishments, and referring foreclosures to the Department of Justice. USDA will work with the U.S. Attorney’s Office to stop judicial foreclosures and evictions on accounts that were previously referred to the Department of Justice. Additionally, USDA has extended deadlines for producers to respond to loan servicing actions, including loan deferral consideration for financially distressed and delinquent borrowers. In addition, for the Guaranteed Loan program, flexibilities have been made available to lenders to assist in servicing their customers.

  8. USDA Seeks Members for Advisory Committee on Urban Agriculture

    Wed Jan 6, 2021 01:00 PM

    HONOLULU, Hawaii, Jan. 6, 2021 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is seeking members for a new advisory committee on urban agriculture, part of a broader effort to focus on the needs of urban farmers. The 12-person committee will advise the Secretary of Agriculture on the development of policies and outreach relating to urban, indoor, and other emerging agricultural production practices as well as identify any barriers to urban agriculture.

  9. USDA Issues $1.68 Billion in Payments to Producers Enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program

    Thu Oct 15, 2020 12:00 AM

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 15, 2020 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is issuing $1.68 billion in payments to agricultural producers and landowners for the 21.9 million acres enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), which provides annual rental payment for land devoted to conservation purposes.

  10. USDA Supports U.S. Seafood Industry Impacted by Retaliatory Tariffs

    Fri Oct 2, 2020 12:00 AM

    Honolulu, October 02, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue recently announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide approximately $530 million to support the U.S. seafood industry and fishermen impacted by retaliatory tariffs from foreign governments. The funding will be provided through the Seafood Trade Relief Program and funded through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), administered by USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA).