Consumption

By 2030, lowered costs and prices of local food, while ensuring subsequent food wasted is reduced overall and maximum consumption benefits received.

photo credit: go.hawaii.com
Consumption of locally grown food plays a key role in increasing local food production in Hawai‘i, since demand for local food drives increased production. The greatest barriers to increasing local food consumption in Hawai‘i include the often higher price for local food, consistent availability in desired quantities, and lack of trust that food marketed is genuinely locally produced. According to a study conducted by Ulupono Initiative surveying nearly 1,200 shoppers, Hawai‘i residents want more locally grown products and are willing to pay more for it.
There is a clear distinction between food and agricultural products. Examples of food products include starches, produce, dairy products, meats, and fish,  while agricultural products encompass a larger category including foods, fuels, fibers, and raw materials. The figure below shows the “farm-gate” value, or commodity sales leaving the farm of agricultural products sold to consumers to show overall trends in local agricultural production. This dataset tracks the larger category of agricultural products including seed crops like cabbage, lettuce, and other produce, which make up an estimated 25% of these total sales. This dataset has dropped in recent years due to a decrease in commodity prices nationwide, which reflects efficiencies in the transportation and agricultural sector with increased technology. The subsequent figure shows the value of crops and animal products for home consumption.
Figure 1: Total value of agricultural products sold. Crop value includes sugar, pineapple, forage crops, and forest products. Complete data not available for aquaculture in 2013, and therefore is omitted from this dataset. (Source: DBEDT Data Book 2016, USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) survey)
Figure 2: the economic benefit of local agricultural products in Hawaii for the home by featuring the value of crops and animal products for home consumption. *Crops include fruits and nuts, vegetables and melons, "all other crops" but limited to home consumption. **Animal products include dairy products (milk), meat animals, miscellaneous livestock, poultry and eggs and is limited to home consumption. (Source: USDA Economic Research Service (ERS))
There are many benefits of consuming local food, including fewer carbon emissions released from transportation, higher nutritional value, and increased sense of local community. Buying local also shows appreciation and respect for the hard work of local farmers. Health data indicates that a diet filled with fresh, local food is also much healthier than consuming processed, convenience foods. Through buying more local food, Hawai‘i residents will not only benefit their diets, but will also support local farmers, businesses, and the economy.
Figure 3: The per capita protein consumption statewide (Source: National Chicken Council). The National Chicken Council (NCC) is the national, non-profit trade association whose primary purpose is to serve as the advocate and voice for the U.S. broiler chicken industry in Washington, D.C.
Aside from housing and transportation, food is the most costly category in household, with many families relying on outside benefits such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) (DBEDT Databook). This subsidy applies to local farmer’s markets and can help make local food more affordable for families.
Figure 4: SNAP Benefits spent at local farmer’s markets. Source: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP)  
Food Waste
Despite the high price of food, there is a considerable amount of food waste in Hawai‘i. According to a 2013 study by University of Hawai'i, Hawai‘i wasted an estimated 261,382 tons of food in 2010, which is about 26% of the available food supply. This equates to approximately 360 pounds of food waste per person annually. The largest portion of Hawai‘i’s food waste is from consumers, with approximately 16% of all edible food in Hawai‘i wasted at the consumption level. Reducing food waste through more sustainable actions such as composting has the potential to reduce Hawai‘i’s dependence on imported food.
What you can Do
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SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
Reduce inequality within and among countries
SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
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