State Officials and Industry to Meet on Kona Coffee Berry Borer Pest

From the House Communications Office:

WHAT: The Department of Agriculture, Big Island Legislative Delegation, UH College of Tropical Agriculture, Kona coffee growers, and members of the Hawaii coffee industry will meet to discuss the recent discovery of a pest known as the coffee berry borer at Kona coffee farms on the Big Island.  The coffee berry borer is considered a devastating coffee pest that reduces yield and quality of the coffee bean.  Given the potential impact to the Kona coffee industry in Hawaii, the purpose of the meeting is to bring the industry together, pool information, discuss what has been done so far, and what action to take to eradicate the pest.

WHEN:   Monday, September 13, 2010 at 2:00 p.m.

WHERE: Captain Cook Coffee Company

79-7415 Mamalahoa Highway

Kainaliu, Hawaii 96750

WHO: Rep. Clift Tsuji, Chairman, House Committee on Agriculture

Big Island Legislators

Sandra Lee Kunimoto, Chairperson –  Board of Agriculture, Hawaii Department of Agriculture (HDOA)

Ken Grace, Interim Associate Dean of Research, University of Hawai`i at Manoa – College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (UH-CTAHR)

Eric Jang, Research Leader, U.S. Department of Agriculture – Agricultural Research Service, Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center

WHY: The identification of the coffee berry borer in Hawaii was confirmed on Wednesday, September 8, 2010 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture entomology laboratory in Riverdale, MD.  The coffee berry borer is a small beetle, native to Central Africa and is found in many coffee-growing regions of the world, including Central and South America.  The beetle bores into the coffee “cherry” to lay its eggs.  The larvae feed on the coffee bean, reducing the yield and quality of the bean. Because the larvae are inside the bean, it makes it difficult to control by pesticides.

For information on the briefing


Miles Hakoda, Director of Communications, UH-CTAHR – (808) 956-3093, e-mail:

Janelle Saneishi, Public Information Officer, HDOA – (808) 973-9560,


Red Bull Cliff Diving Championships (Day 1 Practice) – Hilo, Hawaii

FOR LARGE PICTURES… DOUBLE CLICK on the pictures. All pictures are free for the taking… I’m not a photographer… but if you do use these pictures… please link back to this site.

The 2010 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Championships end in Hilo, Hawaii on Sunday, September 12.

Orlando Duque in perfect form leaps from the platform above Kaiwainui Waterfall

I got the chance to check out today’s practice and let me tell you that these guys are nuts!  I got dizzy just standing on the platform!

It is being held at Kaiwainui Falls, however, the event is not open to the public, however, KWXX is offering tickets through the radio station contests that are currently going on.

Today, the divers had their first of two days of practice before the actual event takes place on Sunday.

(L-R) Orlando Duque, Hassan Mouti and Kent De Mond talk about their practice jumps

I got to interview Orlando Duque who represents Colombia in this competition, however, he lives on Oahu over in Laie.

2009 World Champion Orlando Duque

Here is a short interview with Orlando Duque talking about the event:


The cliff divers were all super cool and easy to talk to and they all seemed super stoked to be in Hawaii!

The cliff divers all got rides back up the cliff

I was super stoked to get to ride in one of these vehicles with three of the crazy athletes.  I filmed the entire ride from the bottom of the cliff to the top of the cliff so I think you guys might enjoy this video:


I don’t know how these guys do it… I really felt like I had vertigo from the top of the cliff.

Orlando Duque looks over the lip of the platform

Frances Hassan Mouti cracked me up a bit but it was all serious when it was time for him to jump.

Hassan Mouti takes the plunge

Media from throughout the world was there today as I couldn’t understand half the words many folks were saying.

Hannah Daniels from the United Kingdoms at least spoke English as Hassan looks up at the leap he just did

Tonight there is a Luau that I will be attending shortly and tomorrow is more practice and then a “Draw Party” at Da Shack Restaurant to see what order the competitors will dive on the actual competition day.

You can click on any of the pictures below for a larger view.

Nucking Futs

I’m getting queasy up here on this Red Bull Platform!

Red Bull Cliff Diving Championship Weekend on the Big Island

Gary Hunt of England, Eber Pava and Orlando Duque of Colombia, Kent De Mond of the USA and Hassan Mouti of France dive from a 16 metre rock at Lana'i Lookout as some local hula girls watch on in the lead up to the final round of the 2010 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, Oahu, Hawaii on September 8; 2010. PHOTO/Dean Treml

Media Release:

Decorated with Hawaiian leis, hula dancers welcomed 12 of the world’s best cliff divers to the sport’s birthplace on the group of islands located in the midst of the Pacific Ocean.

Four months after its kick-off in France and five breathtaking competitions across Europe and Central America later, the grand finale of the 2010 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series is now just two days away.

On September 12 the Kawainui Falls in Hilo on Hawaii’s ‘Big Island’ will be the spot where the World Series winner is crowned, with British athlete Gary Hunt all set to usurp reigning champion Orlando Duque.

Orlando Duque of Colombia dives from a 16 metre rock at Lana'i Lookout as some local hula girls watch on in the lead up to the final round of the 2010 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, Oahu, Hawaii on September 8; 2010. PHOTO/Dean Treml

Three plumes of water falling down from different heights and merging into a beautiful and powerful waterfall, surrounded by an impressive variety of tropic plants and trees, provide a natural backdrop for the final decision in the World Series.

The privately-owned Kawainui Falls and stream (ka=the, wai=water, nui=great) was used to power the water wheel that powered electricity for the Onomea Sugar Mill in the days of the sugar industry. More recently the waterfall has been used as a Hollywood film set and this coming Sunday it will be the backdrop for the 2010 winner of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series.

The coastal town of Hilo, the wettest city in the entire United States with 5,100mm of annual rainfall, will play host to the select dozen of high diving athletes who have 85 feet and three seconds of free fall to fill with jaw-dropping twisting and flipping. With a commanding lead of 19 points, Englishman Gary Hunt needs a single point to secure the title he has craved ever since finishing as runner-up in 2009 – that of the World Series champion.

Taking a huge leap from the Series’ penultimate stop in the heart of Switzerland to the other side of the world in Hawaii, this season’s final 30 highly complex dives will be performed in the land of this majestic sport’s origin. With five athletes still fighting for a position in the top six, the grand finale promises to be an attention-grabbing competition.