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Ke’ei Mauka Farms
MESA Notes – Public
Blog, Online Newsletter, etc. :
Public Contact Information:
About the Placement:
Detailed Placement Description
This placement is owned and operated by a family.
Production Acreage : #6
Number of Full-time Employees: 1
Number and Type of livestock : 60 laying hens
My farm/organization is : Pesticide Free, Transitional
We are members of the Kona Coffee Farmers Association
The local extension service of the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture regularly holds workshops on a variety of topics each month.
The local Kona coffee associations also hold educational talks and demonstrations related to coffee production.
Additionally, The extension services web site posts a variety of studies, papers, and links that offer information on a wide variety of topics of interest to farmers (in English).
English classes are usually available through Adult Education at the local high school.
Site visits to other farms can also be scheduled.
Primary Production :
Herbs, Poultry, Tree fruits, Vegetables, Kona coffee, wood products
About the Internship:
40 hours / week
Training Expectations :
We offer Year-round training or seasonal training, ideally between May and March. Supervision is provided by farm owner, Chuck Gallison. Our farm/organization strongly prefers a steward who is a non-tobacco user.
We feel we can offer interns a very diversified experience and a chance to use their knowledge, but they can expect some hard physical labor–we do live on steep slopes. We are a small family farm without a lot of resources, so we try to make the best use of what we have. It is more important to us to be in harmony with our environment that it is to be maximally productive.
Sales/marketing operations : The steward will be involved in assisting with the prepping, packaging and distribution of harvested farm products (roasted coffee, produce, eggs and value added products) which are offered for sale at a weekly farmers market we participate in. Steward will help prep on Saturdays for the Sunday market, assist with set up Sunday morning, and as needed during the 5 hour market and with breakdown at the day’s end. As the market is as much a social event as a market, it is a great place to meet people, both locals and tourists.
**MESA note: Chuck has a prescription for medical marijuana, and Hawaii culture, in general, is quite accepting of pot smoking, which the Steward should be made aware of prior to accepting this placement.
On-Site Training, Steward’s primary activities :
Assist Ke’ei Mauka owner in all aspects of the farm; including the care of the coffee orchard (weed control, pruning, fertilizing, suckering and chipping), the care of the vegetable gardens (seed germination, transplanting, mulching, fertilizing, weeding and harvesting processing, and in the care and feeding of our flock of about 50 egg laying chickens. The steward will also assist in the maintenance of farm supports– gravity feed irrigation system, small greenhouses, compost piles, worm boxes raised beds and terraces.
Climate and Location Description
Average temperature/Typical weather: Tropical. Range in temp approx 55-85 degrees F. Rainy season May to September (usually) delivers up to 60 inches of rain a year, mostly as afternoon rain and occasional storms. Dry season runs from October to April with many cool nights in the fall and winter that can get down to to 55 to 60 degrees F. This alteration of wet and dry with afternoon clouds is perfect weather for coffee growing. Elevation is 1500 feet (500 meters). Terrain is very steep. Semi rural setting.
Proximity to nearest town/city: 2 miles to Captain Cook (grocery, post office, restaurants.) Twenty miles to largest town on this side of the island for extensive shopping and entertainment. Daily bus to and from town. Host makes at least 1 weekly trip to town.
A furnished bedroom with attached bathroom is available in the family home. Steward is responsible for regular cleaning of both., Free, daily food
Accommodations and amenities provided :
House is shared with host family. Bedroom is private. Bathroom is shared.
Lodging is Modern & well equipped.
Housing is onsite.
Free, daily internet on-site, Telephone (Free local calls only; must buy own calling card for non-local calls), Food provided by host to cook your own breakfast and lunch, shared cooking for evening meals which are shared with host family. Free, seasonal farm products. (Example: seasonal fruits and vegetables; tomatoes, lettuce, avocados, kale, green beans, beets, bananas, papayas and all the Kona coffee you can drink. Steward can drive farm truck on the farm only.
Preferred start date :
Preferred length of internship :