The Story Connective is releasing our 3rd podcast: Chef Turns Regenerative Farmer - James Simplicano!
This interview has sparked a new friendship! We've visited James' farm 3 times now with plans to continue meeting up and helping out. We even had the honor of attending a beautiful Hawaiian blessing ceremony at the farm for a new apprenticeship program.
In this second episode of the Re-envision Maui series, we hear the story of chef turned farmer James Simpliciano. He is the founder of Simpli-Fresh Produce Farms in Lahaina, President of the Hawaii Farmers Union Mauna Kahalawai chapter, and Vice President of Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers Association.
James has profound respect for Hawaiian culture, as evidenced by his focusing on growing canoe crops, the plant species brought to these islands long ago by the ancient Polynesians which for centuries formed the foundation for Hawaiian organic food self-sufficiency. His daily actions embody the Hawaiian value of Malama Aina: care and respect for the land as though it was a family member. He tells us a fascinating story about the lo’i of ancient Hawai’i; the wet kalo - or taro - crops that were once the staple of the Hawaiian diet and are today experiencing a revival.
And join us as he introduces us to regenerative agriculture techniques such as Korean Natural Farming, hugelkulture, and permaculture - techniques he employs every day on the farm. Topics we cover in this podcast include: cooking, chef, soil, compost, mulching, organic, ahupua’a, Korean Natural Farming, regenerative, permaculture, polyculture, biodynamic, hugelkultur, ulu (breadfruit: Artocarpus altilis), banana, moringa (Moringa oleifera), vetiver grass (Chrysopogon zizanioides), kalo (taro: Colocasia esculenta), sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea) coconut, hemp (cannabis), kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus), forest gardening, bees, cooperatives, community supported agriculture (CSA), chicken tractor, managed grazing, value added product, grant, Maui, Hawai'i
This episode is one of a series called Re-envision Maui, about an ongoing transition on the island of Maui. If you would like more background on this series, we suggest you checkout the episode entitled Re-envision Maui: Before and After Sugar.
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