Hawaii Officials Destroy 800 Pounds of Green Onions Because of Unapproved Pesticide

The Hawai‘i State Department of Health (DOH) Food and Drug Branch required the destruction and disposal of approximately 800 pounds of fresh green onions Tuesday due to the presence of an unapproved pesticide found on the product during routine sampling.  Wong Hon Hin, Inc., a Waianae farm has been ordered to cease the sale of all suspect product until followup testing can show no pesticide residue.

A routine monthly sampling of twenty different raw agricultural commodities was collected on October 17, 2011 and analyzed for the presence of pesticide residues. The results received from the state laboratory on October 27 indicated that the sample of green onions had 0.071 parts per million (ppm) of oxamyl, a pesticide that is not approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for use on green onions. Oxamyl is approved by the EPA for use on a variety of vegetables and has an allowable range from 0.1 ppm for carrots up to 10 ppm for celery. Green onions have a zero tolerance for oxamyl.

Wong Hon Hin Inc. was notified on October 28 to cease the sale of all suspect green onions. That afternoon a follow-up sample from the farm was collected and analyzed for the presence of oxamyl. Results received the next day indicated 0.309 ppm of oxamyl on the green onions. The farm was notified of the results and instructed to destroy and properly dispose of the suspect product. A DOH Food and Drug inspector witnessed the destruction of approximately 800 pounds of green onions today. No green onions will be allowed to be sold by the farm until subsequent samples indicate zero levels of oxamyl.

The DOH believes that the crop of green onions tested on October 17th was distributed to consumers in Hawai‘i. Because the pesticide is allowed in greater amounts on other crops, the department does not consider the situation to be a significant threat to public health.

The DOH Food and Drug Branch routinely collects and tests a variety of produce samples each month for pesticide residues. Any sample found in violation is immediately followed with a cease and desist order, further sampling and education. The Food and Drug Branch safeguards public health by ensuring that food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices and related consumer products are safe and properly labeled. The program inspects establishments within the state where these products are manufactured, distributed, or sold. It also investigates complaints, and collects samples to determine compliance with product standards.

APEC Business Travel Card Legislation Approved

Bipartisan legislation will enhance business travel, investment, and trade opportunities for American citizens in the Asia-Pacific region.

The Asia-Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce (APCAC), representing 27 AmChams in 21 economies, expressed appreciation to the U.S. Congress for passing the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Business Travel Cards (ABTC) Act of 2011.

“Passage of this legislation sends a clear message that the United States is committed to bolstering its commercial presence in Asia. Access to business travel cards will significantly enhance business travel, investment, and trade opportunities for U.S. citizens in the rapidly growing economies in the APEC region,” said APCAC Chair Steven R. Okun.

Passage of this legislation prior to the APEC Leaders’ Meeting in Honolulu was a top priority for APCAC.

Currently, business people of 18 APEC economies already use the ABTC, including for entering the United States via special immigration lanes. The just-passed legislation will allow American businesspeople to enjoy reciprocal rights as the legislation enables the Department of Homeland Security to distribute ABTCs to U.S. citizens doing business in the APEC region.

APEC Business Travel CardAPCAC expressed appreciation to Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) as well as Congressmen Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Rick Larsen (D-WA) for their determined leadership on this issue that will promote U.S. exports into the world’s fastest growing region.

The Asia-Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce comprises 27 member AmChams from across the entire Asia Pacific region. APCAC AmChams represent the growing interests of over 50,000 executives and over 10,000 businesses in the region. The APCAC membership manages trade volumes in excess of US $400 billion and direct investments (FDI) of nearly US $300 billion.

Four Pipe Bombs Found in Puna Drug Bust Today

Hawaiʻi Police Department Area I Vice Officers discovered four pipe bombs at an Ainaloa residence this morning (November 4), while executing a search warrant. Christopher Robinson, the 39-year-old resident, was arrested after officers discovered an indoor marijuana growing operation, crystal methamphetamine or “ice”, the pipe bombs, and other bomb making materials at his residence.

The pipe bombs were neutralized by a Marine Explosive Ordinance Team currently stationed at the Pohakuloa Training Area.

Officers seized a total of 253 marijuana plants, ranging in height from 6 inches to 4 feet, one and a half pounds of dried, processed marijuana, .2 grams of crystal methamphetamine, marijuana and “ice” pipes, digital scales, and ammunition.

Another male party, 44-year-old Randy Pascal, of Puna, was also arrested after he was located on the property.

The investigation was the result of information from the public regarding the possible construction of the pipe bombs and the marijuana cultivating operation.

Robinson and Pascal remain in custody as police continue their investigation.

Assisting Hawaiʻi Police Department personnel during the execution of the search warrant were members of the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and the Hawaiʻi County Fire Department Hazardous Materials Team.

Tonight – Black and White Night… Dancing in the Streets!

Outrigger Enterprises Group Adds Wyndham Royal Garden Resort to its Portfolio

Outrigger Enterprises Group has expanded its alliance with Wyndham Vacation Ownership, the world’s largest vacation ownership company, with the recent announcement that Outrigger will oversee on-site management of The Wyndham Royal Garden Resort. Steve Winter has been named resort manager of the property as it joins the Outrigger Resort Club by Wyndham, which also includes Wyndham Waikiki Beach Walk, Wyndham Kona Hawaiian Resort, Wyndham Mauna Loa Village, and Wyndham Royal Sea Cliff.

The Wyndham Vacation Resorts Royal Garden At Waikiki

The Wyndham Vacation Resorts Royal Garden At Waikiki

“We have found great success working with Wyndham Vacation Ownership for nearly a decade and are pleased to welcome The Wyndham Royal Garden Resort into our management portfolio,” said David Carey, president and CEO, Outrigger Enterprises Group. “Outrigger is renowned for its management expertise with aloha and, as such, Wyndham guests can look forward to a vacation experience that is genuine, restful and memorable.”

The Wyndham Royal Garden Resort recently completed an extensive renovation to its 140 rooms — now offering high-quality studio, one- and two-bedroom units, as well as upgraded resort amenities, including a swimming pool, sauna and fitness center. The property is conveniently located within walking distance from premiere dining and shopping venues at the popular Waikiki Beach Walk®.

The property is part of the Outrigger Resort Club, a premium level of the Wyndham Vacation Ownership global product called Club Wyndham Plus®, the company’s points-based exchange program that allows owners the flexibility to vacation at more than 70 resorts in Hawaii and other markets and enjoy other vacation options and access to special travel opportunities such as cruises and guided trips.