ISLAND EARTH | A Documentary Film By Cyrus Sutton
A rich and complex tale of a young indigenous scientist’s journey through the corn fields of GMO companies and loi patches of traditional Hawaiian elders reveals modern truths and ancient values that can save our food future.
To feed all the humans on the planet, we are going to have to grow as much food in the next 35 years as we have grown since the beginning of civilization.
But our conventional agricultural practices are depleting the earth’s natural resources faster than we are replenishing them. Not to mention that the pros and cons of most attempts at modern chemical solutions (pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, GMOs) continue to be heavily debated by scientists, policy makers, industrial heavyweights and community activists.
How are we going to feed the world without destroying the planet we live on?
Island Earth brings this question to life by taking us on the ground to Hawaii, the “ground zero” where all of these issues collide in sharp relief. Less than two centuries ago, native Hawaiians fed their large population through some of the most historically sustainable agricultural practices ever documented. Yet modern-day Hawaii now imports 80-90% of their food supply from elsewhere in the world, due to a complex web of public policy and private interests. Within two generations, the Hawaiians have become canaries in the coal mine for food issues that are affecting the entire planet.
This film captures our moment in time, where two separate paths are being forged at once: one that builds upon the past in the name of progress, and the other that rejects the past in the name of progress. It bears witness to the choices that we are making today that will affect our future no matter what.