Contact Us


All News Releases By Date


EPA awards $36,609 to University of Hawai'i's Kaneohe Extension Office

Release Date: 4/26/2005
Contact Information: Dean Higuchi, (808) 541-2711

Funds to be used to help farmers combat melon fly

HONOLULU -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently awarded $36,609 to the University of Hawaii's Kaneohe Extension Office to increase food safety and minimize risk for Hawai'i's small scale farmers by assessing methods to reduce the amount of pesticides used on agriculture crops.

"The information gathered from the University of Hawai'i's project will help Hawai'i farmers reduce their pesticide use and potential exposure as they control the melon fly," said Enrique Manzanilla, director for the EPA Pacific Southwest Region's Communities and Ecosystems Division. "The environment, workers, consumers, and endangered species in Hawai'i will all benefit from less pesticides being applied to fields and crops."

The project will work to identify environmentally friendly pest control techniques that will reduce the amount of pesticides used on more than 80 different crops, including tomatoes, peppers, beans, eggplants, watermelons, cantaloupes, pumpkins, cucumbers and squashes.

Each year, melon flies causes significant economic losses that greatly impact the profit and sustainability of many tropical fruit and vegetable farms in Hawai'i. Export regulations also do not allow any fruits or vegetables with fruit fly damage to be shipped to the continental United States and international markets.

The EPA recommends the coordinated use of pest and environmental information with available pest control methods to prevent unacceptable levels of pest damage by the most economical means and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment

# # #