Shehata selected to attend congressional confab

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Date: Thursday, February 1, 2007
Contact: Alyson Kakugawa-Leong, (808) 974-7642

For Immediate Release

The Board on Agricultural Assembly and Council on Governmental Affairs of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC) have selected University of Hawaii at Hilo Professor Dr. Sabry Shehata to participate in its ninth annual exhibition and reception for members of Congress and their staffs.

The event will be held Wednesday, February 28 at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington D.C. Its purpose is to inform Congress of the benefits of agricultural research and education and showcase some of the exciting cutting-edge science taking place in the food and agricultural arenas. Shehata was selected from more than 200 people nationwide, and was the only person out of 40 from Hawai`i, who will make a presentation at the convention.

A professor of agricultural economics, Shehata will introduce participants to a new, innovative, interactive program he’s developed to estimate the financial feasibility of launching agribusiness initiatives. Data on the cost of establishing a business is input into the model, which then estimates the Pro forma Income Statement, Pro forma Balance Sheet, Cash Flow Statement, and conducts financial analyses needed to approve a loan. The model provides business owners with assistance from the conceptual stage through the loan application.

The program has been published on the Web site,
HawaiianAgriculturalProducts.com, allowing agribusiness owners to access the model along with other Web site benefits. The program has been tested in projecting the financial feasibility of establishing a home care cooperative in East Hawai`i, and received favorable reviews from the agricultural and financial community.

The Web site is also being used to teach students and farmers various financial and marketing principles through e-commerce and how to improve the distribution efficiency of various products. Native Hawaiian, rural and underprivileged students and their families are among the groups Shehata believes will utilize the site as a source for helping market their products and improve the chances of their business succeeding.

For a demonstration, visit http://hawaiianagriculturalproducts.com.


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