Alexander & Baldwin Announces New Grass-Fed Cattle Operation In Central Maui
Kūlōlio Ranch, a wholly-owned subsidiary of A&B, is collaborating with
"By raising grass-fed cattle on
Kūlōlio Ranch has recently doubled the size of its grazing herd from 150 to 300 animals, and is in the process of installing more than 18 miles of perimeter fencing to manage the cattle, together with irrigation systems to supply some of the pastures and facilitate reliable forage throughout the year. Kūlōlio Ranch hopes to have 900 animals grazing on the property by the end of 2017, and 3,500 animals by 2021.
"This is another sign of progress as we transition from sugar to diversified agriculture. These expanded pasture spaces will allow ranches on
Sustainable ranching practices are being used to cultivate the pastures and manage the cattle. The animals are moved on a daily basis within paddocks, permitting them to graze freely while allowing grasses and other forages to accumulate and grow during rest periods. The cattle naturally fertilize the soil, eliminating the need for chemical fertilizers. This holistic management process improves soil quality, sequesters soil carbon, reduces runoff, and provides a healthy environment for the cattle.
"These are very progressive ranching practices that will help promote the health of the cattle and maintain and enhance the quality of the soil in the pastures," said Dr.
Grass-fed beef production is one part of A&B's effort to transition former sugar lands into diversified agricultural uses. Under the new diversified model, the former 36,000 acre sugar plantation is being divided up into smaller farms to accommodate a wide range of agricultural uses. In addition to cattle ranching, other potential uses include energy crops, food crops, and the development of an agriculture park. A&B aims to transition 8,000 to 10,000 acres into diversified agriculture this year, and to aggressively convert more acreage over the next few years.
"This is a strong start, yet there's much more progress on the horizon," Benjamin said. "Establishing viable agriculture on these
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