Pioneer tops Syngenta in ‘corn fight’

NAWILIWILI — Syngenta Seeds brought the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank’s Spring Healthy Food and Fund Drive to a healthy close Tuesday.

Kelvin Moniz, the food resources director for KIFB, had earlier extended the drive until May 15 because of the activity being generated on the originally scheduled cutoff date.

Mark Phillipson, general manager for Syngenta, was ready to make a special run to Costco just to better the contribution made by the Pioneer Hi-Bred group last week.

“They have a corn-against-corn friendly competition,” Moniz said. “But beside the Pioneer-Syngenta competition, Pioneer even has an in-house competition between the Waimea Research Station and the Kekaha Parent Seed facility.”

The dust settled on Syngenta Seeds’ contribution, which overflowed Phillipson’s Ford, the scale weighing out a total of 1,388 pounds compared to Pioneer’s 1,450-pound contribution.

“Every little bit helps,” Moniz said. “We just got 172 pounds which was generated by the Kalaheo School production of ‘Alice in Wonderland Jr.’ where students under 12 could be admitted free for a canned good.”

Adding to the total, Moniz said the Koloa Fire Station came in with 543 pounds from Koloa and Po‘ipu residents and last week, the Transportation Security Administration dropped off 670 pounds contributed by its employees.

Contributions from the County of Kaua‘i employees and departments are still trickling in.

More efforts are under way as the credit unions on Kaua‘i launched their 20/12 campaign against hunger Monday through the end of the month, Moniz said.

Under this program, which has a goal of $20,000 and 12,000 pounds of food, credit union members and non-members are encouraged to drop off their food and monetary contributions at any of the federal credit unions on the island.

There is an additional incentive for a free customized rice paddle for a contribution of a bag of rice, or $20 contribution.

Visit www.kauaifoodbank.org or call 246-3809 for more information.

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