Hawaii plan would offset cost of organic farm certification

Published: May. 10, 2016 at 8:54 AM HST
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Associated Press

WAIMANALO, Hawaii (AP) - Hawaii would become the first state to pass a plan that would set up tax breaks for farmers to offset the cost of becoming certified as organic.

Under the plan farmers could get up to $50,000 in tax credits for qualifying expenses. The state Legislature approved the proposal this year.

Gov. David Ige has not yet decided whether he'll sign the bill into law.

The organic foods industry in the U.S. has grown to make up about 5 percent of the total food market, and reached $39.1 billion in sales in 2014, according to the Organic Trade Association.

Farmers have long been offered subsidies for crops like corn and soybeans, but the organic industry hasn't been widely targeted for subsidies.

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