Next week the only dairy on the Hawaiian island of Oahu will shut down, forcing the islands 900,000+ residents the only alternative of importing their milk. As I was researching this story I was amazed to learn that Hawaii will only have two operating dairies, both on the Big Island. However, those two dairies only produce enough for that island so the rest of Hawaii’s milk consumption is imported. As you would expect milk in Honolulu is a bit more expensive than what you are probably paying, with the price ranging from $6.50 to $8.00/gallon in local stores. Yet, despite these prices seven dairies (four on Oahu and three on the Big Island) have closed since 2000.
On one of my trips to Hawaii I visited an abandoned shrimp farm that closed due to local regulations. I was shocked to learn that virtually all of the fish, shrimp, etc. consumed on the islands was imported despite the fact that there is obviously a great deal of water and fishing grounds that surround the state.
When are politicians going to learn that you can’t create jobs and economic opportunity by being anti-business?