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Kona Keei Farm (DO NOT USE)

Captain Cook, Hawaii
MESA Notes – Public
Website :
Blog, Online Newsletter, etc. :
Public Contact Information:
[email protected]

About the Placement:

Detailed Placement Description

Kona Keei Farm is a very different farm in many ways. Owned by renowned agronomist and soil science expert, Bob Shaffer, our aim is:
– to teach young farmers whole systems agronomy and soil science as a critical axe of developing soil, human and environmental health.
to steward the soil and the plants through regenerative, biological and biodynamic farming systems, and cultural practices such as cover crops, composting and mineral balancing to elevate soil health, and to sequester carbon as humus and prevent soil erosion.
– to produce the freshest, highest quality food products for local markets

Kona Keei Farm is a 7-acre certified organic farm on The Big Island of Hawaii.
We produce a wide diversity of tropical crops all year long. Our main crops include macadamia nut, coffee, mango, avocado and breadfruit. We also grow taro, cacao, bananas, passionfruit, pineapples, papayas, citrus, coconuts, rollinia, soursop, among many other crops. We have many free-range chickens who lay in winter and spring, giving us an abundance of eggs during those seasons.

Our farm is ideal for stewards looking to learn more about agronomy and soil science in an effort to rethink how we farm our lands and how we impact the environment. The work we do – taking care of our land and teaching young farmers – is as important to us as the produce our farm creates. In this way, we are not solely crop production focused.

We are a very different farm than what most people think a farm should be. We practice natural process farming. This means that we aim to let Mother Nature grow and thrive here as she would without us. We intervene as little as possible in the resident flora and fauna environment. We have many weeds and we are thankful for them. Sometimes you can’t see our crops and we are proud that they live harmoniously with their natural environment. Stewards here learn the science as to why this very different way of farming creates a healthier environment, healthier soils, crops and healthier people. Stewards also learn how to balance the management of crop growth within a natural environment.

Typically, the stewards who thrive on this farm are curious, caring, mature and enthusiastic hard workers who don’t mind the many challenges of living with Mother Nature in the tropics.

The farm is situated in the beautiful Kealakekua Bay area of the island. It’s a small agricultural community today, but was and is also a highly sacred area for the Hawaiians. The Pu’u’honua o Honaunau National Historical Park is very near and offers cultural activities year round. Our local paddle club welcomes new paddlers and gives them a chance to experience the Hawaiian tradition of canoe racing.

Primary Production :

Tree fruits, over 50 different tropical fruits

About the Internship

Training Hours:

minimum 25 hrs/week

Training Expectations :

Stewards work with Bob Shaffer and Christine Lee on varied tasks depending on the season. Schedules are set each week at a weekly farm meeting. We require a minimum of 25 hrs/week.

On-Site Training, Steward’s primary activities :

Stewards will study and be trained in agronomy and soil science from renowned agronomist, Bob Shaffer. Stewards participate in all aspects of running a small farm.

Climate and Location Description

Hawaii is a tropical climate. Specifically, South Kona is dry in the winter and wet in the summer. Our average daily temperature throughout the year is about 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Winter nights can be chilly with lows around 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Compensation :

We have two, two person bungalows and a shared kitchen and bathroom for stewards, Stewards are welcome to all food produced on the farm. There is also a designated steward garden. We provide seeds for the stewards.

Accommodations and amenities provided :

There are two bungalows for housing, a shared kitchen and outdoor shower. We have free internet access, but it can be slow sometimes. We arrange rides to the store a couple times a week and to the beaches.

Preferred start date :


Preferred length of internship :

We are flexible with training periods