Isle floriculture grows to $100M
Sales of locally grown flowers and nursery products exceeded $100 million last year, and growers can thank Hawaii’s bustling construction industry. Mark Hudson, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Hawaii statistics field office, told Pacific Business News that floriculture is now the biggest sector of Hawaii’s agricultural economy, ahead of pineapple, sugar cane, and macadamia nuts. “All the new buildings and homes in Hawaii need landscaping,” he said in the article. “This is a reflection of our healthy construction economy.” According to the official report, plant rentals saw the largest increase over the previous year, followed by foilage, lei flowers and landscape plants. The largest “commodity group,” accounting for $33 million in sales, includes landscape foilage, bedding plants, propagation materials and other nursery products. The report also found that Hawaii County accounted for more than half the state’s total sales, followed by Honolulu and Maui counties at 32 and 12 percent, respectively.