Molokai MauiThe Molokai Maui
Mycogen Seeds has not locked down Molokai except for a few employees, finished the last harvest and moved or fired most of the people. And while some may be lucky to go see the semen companies, the losses of employment are hard to gulp. Dow-DuPont Agriculture in December announces it will close Mycogen on Molokai and reduce employment across the country.
It came three month after the merger of Dow, Mycogen's mother corporation, with DuPont. For Mycogen Seeds on Molokai, March 21 reaped its harvest of about 30 acre, followed by the last shaft of lay-offs on March 30, Helm said. Out of the company's 78 employees, 19 were remunerated for the move to Kauai or the mainland, three went into retirement and seven remained to shut down the site.
Some went looking for work on the isle. Whilst there is no formal date for the plant to close, the firm is looking to close the site by the last three months of this year, Helm said. Recently, the last big surge of redundancies was the closure of Molokai Ranch and the dismissal of around 120 staff in 2008.
However, the employment environment is different from then, said Rob Stephenson, chairman of the Molokai Chamber of Commerce. Mr Stephenson said that the shedding of 78 workplaces on the thinly settled Molokai corresponds to 14,262 in Honolulu or 2,466 in Maui, depending on the number of workers on each of the islands, as the government reports in March.
The other half of the island's seeds sector is Monsanto, with 67 to 87 full-time and 87 fulltime and temporary workers and just under 2,300 acre, of which, according to Dawn Bicoy, Monsanto Municipal Affairs Director on the Molokai, approximately 500 acre can be in use. She has enrolled in a series of educational programs, among them an entrepreneurial and computer course and a "Garden to Farm" programme beginning at the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawaii.
She said she wanted to make good use of the 30 hectares of property on which she and her man are living. Kawamae, after more interested in purchasing the egg, said she saw a possible commercial possibility and is also considering to invest in ovine and caprine animals. Mycogen' scouting assignment was to journey through the field and record all plant issues such as weed, insect or disease.
Your man is a service engineer and still works for Mycogen. Although the shedding of so many positions is difficult for the municipality, Catherine Kawamae said that she thinks Molokai is unique in its equipment to handle it. In the beginning of this year's legislature, Lynn DeCoite of Molokai suggested a bill to finance vocational education and help expelled Mycogen migrants.
But Maui County has earmarked $200,000 in its budgets to help the expelled Mycogenites. The DeCoite pointed out a dilemma that goes beyond finance - fewer job vacancies are on an isle, which usually has the state's highest jobless rate, which was at 4. 8 per cent as of April, as opposed to 2 per cent nationally, according to the state's Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.
He is the co-ordinator of the Molokai Education Center at the University of Hawaii Maui Collegium. In addition, the school took an educator from Maui to give a one-day course on certifying safety personnel, with 19 attendees, a mixture of Mycogen employees and other inmates. Mycogen employees also showed interest in the university's "Garden to Farm" programme.
Currently unoccupied with Molokais jobless bureau, Dudoit said Alberta Patchen has done dual task to help operatives wading through their jobless entitlements. The feelings towards the Molokai seeds growers are a mixture. By 2014, when the GMO Organism Mooratorium went on the Maui County ballots, Molokai citizens were voting 63% against.
Asked at the beginning of this months what he thought of the closing of Mycogen, Hoolehua builder Bobby Alcain summed up an opinion shared by many - good, "because of what they did to the country," but poor, because of job losses, he said. The Molokai residents of Keani Rawlins-Fernandez said their families' farmstead is about a quarter nile from Mycogen'sields.
They said this included diversifying agricultural production and the restoration of Molokai's picture of the country of Aina Mumona - the rich country that nourished the population. In Hoolehua, Mycogen farmed about 420 acre. They own 103 acre and lease the remainder from the State Department of Agricultur and Homelands. Approximately 70 per cent of the 420 acres has been built in covering cultures to forestall run-off and begin the rehab, Helm said.
Helmet said the firm has received enquiries, but he could make no reference to any name, even though he said the listing will include privately-held firms and not-profits. Helmet was initially introduced by Cargill Hybrid Sea in 1997 before Mycogen purchased Cargill in 2000. "One part of us getting the lower price to buy our stock was because we could fill the container from the mainland," said DeCoite, who runs L&R Farms on Molokai.
As Mycogen was also a large purchaser of petrol, it may be that natural gaz has to stay longer in the island's storage tank and therefore costs more, she added.