225-acres of Prime Kealakekua Farmlands Protected in Perpetuity Hawaiian Islands Land Trust acquires second conservation easement from HCC Farms, LLC ensuring that the land will remain in agriculture

KEALAKEKUA, HAWAII - June 30, 2017 - The Hawaiian Islands Land Trust (HILT) and Honolulu Coffee announced today that a second conservation easement protecting 150-acres of prime agricultural land situated above Kealakekua Bay and part of the Honolulu Coffee Company’s thriving coffee farm was sold to the land trust.  HILT purchased the initial conservation easement in March 2016 on 75-acres of the HCC Farms property. With the second easement in place, the entire 225-acres of land will remain in agricultural use forever.  Honolulu Coffee will be expanding its coffee production in Kona as part of its Farm to Cup program. The protected farmland also includes cultural resources and swaths of native ohia forests providing habitat for native birds including the apapane and io.

“We were really excited to find a conservation group aligned with our goals for protecting agricultural land in Hawaii for the long term,” commented Ed Schultz, President of HCC Farms LLC, “HILT’s leadership team did a great job of educating us on the process and really worked with us every step of the way to ensure our land was conserved the right way.”

The funds for the purchase of the easement were contributed by the Freeman Foundation of Honolulu, as part of the land trust’s agricultural initiative to conserve working farms and ranches in Hawaii.  This second easement on HCC Farms LLC property is another important step in moving Hawaii towards greater self-sufficiency and increased food security. HILT CEO, Kawika Burgess stated “We are very pleased to work with Honolulu Coffee on protecting these beautiful farmlands to ensure that the rich agricultural heritage continues in this special part of Kona.”