Maui News

Grant seeks limu project with high profit margin

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Limu and urchins at Anuenue Fisheries Research Center (Feb. 25, 2022). PC: DLNR

Hawaiʻi state officials want to support a project that enhances the use of Hawaiʻi limu to yield a high investment return.

Officials said the state Department of Agriculture is willing to issue a grant of up to $31,315 to foster the development of such a specialty seaweed crop for the foreign or domestic market.

The deadline for the grant application is Nov. 30. The grant project should be completed before March 20, 2025. Information and applications are available at the state agriculture’s Market Development Branch or by calling 808-973-9465.


In March, Gov. David Ige proclaimed 2022 as “Year of the Limu” in recognition of the significant role limu have in Hawaiian traditions. The governor’s proclamation noted that limu are an integral part of the traditional Hawaiian diet, and are used for medicinal, religious and cultural purposes.

The limu grant is part of Hawaiʻi’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program which is funded by the US Department of Agriculture and administered through the Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture’s Market Development Branch. 

For the purposes of the grant, limu is defined as any various kinds of edible seaweed, which form an important part of the traditional Hawaiian diet. Eligible plants must be cultivated or managed and used by people for food, medicinal purposes, and/or aesthetic gratification and be considered cultivated, as wild plants are not considered specialty crops by the USDA. This definition includes plants or plant products harvested from “wild areas” whose populations are managed, monitored and documented to ensure long-term, sustainable production. 


HDOA is seeking eligible nonprofit organizations, local, state and federal government entities, for-profit organizations, universities and individuals for projects that enhance the competitiveness of Hawaiʻi limu. Eligible applicants must reside in, or their business or educational affiliation must be registered in Hawaiʻi.

For more information on the grant, contact the Market Development Branch via email at: [email protected] or 808-973-9465.


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