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Take Time to Understand Scientific Facts About Pesticides

July 17, 2014
Maui Weekly

With all the anti-agriculture rhetoric in the local community, there needs to be greater emphasis placed on understanding facts and basic scientific processes.

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and pesticides are not even remotely the same thing. It seems that certain people with Mainland ties and a political agenda are lumping these words together and giving them an all-encompassing negative association to induce emotional anti-agricultural responses from the people of Maui.

In reality, pesticides are used in nearly every form of agriculture, including organic. Natural resource organizations, lawn care professionals and park and road maintenance crews in Hawai'i all use the same kinds of pesticides that agriculture companies do, and in some cases, use higher concentrations. Why? Because they work to control invasive weeds or bugs-the same things biotech companies need to control to protect crops.

These aren't "chemical cocktails." They are generally the same chemicals you see in every hardware store on the island. The only thing that this misleading anti-agricultural information does is make our county a hostile place to live for the hundreds of permanent residents who have worked for and relied on agriculture for years.

Let's take the time to make sure we are understanding scientific facts, and not just listening to emotional anti-agricultural politicking.

Anti-agriculture is, essentially, anti-aloha.

Ajay R. Jones Kihei



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