By Dagny Brand

With over 100 different fruit trees and medicinal plants, as well as macadamia nut trees, sheep, goats, chickens, and ducks, Honaunau Farm represents a “biologically diverse agriculture model” for farming, where everything is integrated together. “[The farm] is for community food, for education, and for living off the land,” said Founder Steve Sakala, discussing the way Honaunau Farm is used to educate the community on sustainable agriculture. “We wanted people in the community to see a diversified system in action,” Sakala explained.

Sakala offers classes for the community on a variety of topics, including “Intro to Permaculture” and “Intro to CBD.” Guests staying on the farm also have the opportunity to take courses in farming and sustainability. Due to the coronavirus, the farm has turned its short-term vacation rentals into long-term ones. 

Honaunau Farm is the birthplace of Hawaii’s first CBD business, Mana Artisan Botanics. “We wanted to use the platform of hemp and CBD as a way to talk more about sustainable and regenerative agriculture,” said Sakala. He also discussed the focus of Mana Artisan Botanics on “holistic wellness,” which is important during a pandemic. “We are about educating people about thinking about hemp and CBD as a dietary or nutritional essential,” said Sakala, including information on the endocannabinoid system, the system that reacts with CBD, in the human body. “The system is responsible for the balancing of the body’s systems, which is why people get such a diversified benefit from using CBD and hemp.”

While CBD helps with pain, inflammation, anxiety, and sleeplessness, it can also balance cholesterol, blood pressure, insulin, and hormones. Mana Artisan Botanics sources many of their ingredients from Honaunau Farm, including turmeric, which is used in their Hawaii Turmeric Oil.“When we combine the turmeric with the CBD, you get this beautiful sinnergy of both the plants, which you just don’t see in other plant combinations,” said Sakala, including that turmeric “is one of the original canoe crops from the Polynesians and is one of the most widely studied plant medicines on the planet.” The oil is all Hawaii sourced, so “every bit of it supports Hawaiian farmers.” Sakala also explained that CBD is legal to grow and manufacture both federally and locally and is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid.

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