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Map depicting Gokseong County in the southern end of South Korea


Sister City relationship between Hawai‘i County and Gokseong County was established on September 21, 2011. Gokseong County is located in South Jeolla Province in South Korea.

Gokseong is the center of nature-friendly agriculture devoted to developing sustainable agriculture and restoring the environment. Hawai‘i County has partnered with several local community organizations to establish Sister City relationships to exchange and share in commonalities such as the economies of tourism, construction, agriculture and education.

A growing interest in natural farming played a big part in the establishment of this Sister City relationship. In 2008, Korean Natural Farming creator Master Cho Han demonstrated the method’s success during a tour of his Korean-based piggeries in Gokseong. In 2009, Sin Mook Kang, owner of Kang Farms in Mountain View, adopted the practice for his piggery outside of Kurtistown. It was the first of its kind in the United States to use innovative waste management technology.

In April 2012, Mayor Heo Nam Seok and a delegation of officials from Gokseong travelled to Hawai‘i Island to meet with Mayor Billy Kenoi and government and community leaders in their first official visit.

Supporting Organizations: Big Island Korean Club, Hawai‘i FFA Foundation, Hawai‘i Natural Farming, Hilo Korean Christian Church, University of the Nations, Kohala Intergenerational Center, Cho Global Natural Farming

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