The Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation (HFBF) and the Department of Agriculture sponsor farmers markets around the island of Oahu. The HFBF “is a non-profit organization of farming families united for the purpose of analyzing problems and formulating action to ensure the future of agriculture thereby promoting the well-being of farming and the State’s economy” (HFBF, 2006).
To be a vendor at an HFBF farmers market, products sold must be Hawaii grown and produced. Vendors that sell fresh vegetables, melons, potatoes, sweet potatoes, fruits, tree nuts, and berries must be Food Safety Certified by the Hawaii State Department of Agriculture by a specific date. Farms that provide these products to vendors must also be Food Safety Certified where required. New vendors need to show proof of certification. Rules and regulations to qualify as a vendor can be found here.
On Wednesdays from 4PM-7PM at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center, there is the HFBF Honolulu Farmers Market. It is located at 777 Ward Ave, on the lawn on the corner of Ward Ave and King St. This market is co-sponsored by the City & County of Honolulu. Parking is available in the Neal S. Blaisdell Center parking lot, King St entrance. Regularly there is a $5 parking fee, but when there is another event, notify the attendant that the visit is for the farmers market. It is really not worth $5 for parking for the farmers market, so park elsewhere if asked to pay.
This HFBF farmers market posts a Tip Sheet each week that shares the scheduled vendors as well as featured items and live music artist(s). It is important that vendors view and possibly print the Tip Sheet before attending the farmers market. The information provided is helpful to know before arriving at the farmers market.
There was 26 vendors on Wednesday, August 4, 2010 in addition to the live music of D. Shoji Nakamoto. Every week there is a different hot meal on special, on August 4 it was Seared Ahi with Shiitake, Garlic Shrimp, and Imu-style Kalua Pork dinner plates of Hawaiian Style Chili Co. The featured farm was Nalo Farms of Waimanalo and the featured nursery was that of Kogachi Orchids of Waianae.
Now, this farmers market begins at peak rush hour. So, if it is necessary to fight the traffic to get there and then again when leaving, it is probably not the best choice of farmers markets to visit. HFBF has other farmers markets as well:
- Thursdays at 5PM-7:30PM in Kailua
- Saturdays at 7:30AM-11AM at KCC
- Sundays at 8AM-11AM at Mililani High School
Please also be reminded that there are other farmers markets, like Mahiku farmers markets, and People’s Open Markets as well!