Food Program Newsletter, Fall 2014

Happy Fall! Here at the Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC), we've been hard at work sowing the seeds for a more resilient food system. Here's a brief update on some of our accomplishments, on-going projects, and upcoming events. Check it out!

Advocacy For A More Resilient Food System


WE DID IT! NEIGHBORHOOD FOOD ACT BECOMES LAW!

BIG NEWS!! Last Friday, after much anticipation, Governor Jerry Brown signed the Neighborhood Food Act as part of a package of “Farm-to-Fork” legislation! Read the full press release here. This law protects the rights of so many tenants and HOA members across the state who wish to grow their own food! We were so happy we all went home and planted a seed in honor of the bill’s passage, and you should too! Tweet us a photo of you planting a seed (using the hashtag #seedsofjustice) in celebration!

We are grateful to all our organizational partners for their hard work and support, including Slow Food CASocial Justice Learning InstituteUbuntu Green and many more! We also want to thank our supporters (that’s YOU!) for sending letters, making calls, and spreading the word throughout the legislative process! We could not have done it without you.

At SELC, we are looking forward to future legislation expanding urban agriculture as a tool for community economic resilience in addition to a source of healthy food in our communities. If you want to see more legislation like the Neighborhood Food Act, consider supporting us by becoming a Community Member or joining our Sustainer Circle today!

SELC ADDRESSES UNWARRANTED REGULATION OF SEED LIBRARIES BY STATE DEPARTMENTS OF AGRICULTURE

After hearing about a seed library in Pennsylvania being shut down by the state department of agriculture, SELC dove into seed law and wrote an article on seed laws and their application to seed libraries. Since then, the seed library movement has mobilized and SELC is taking the lead on developing a national campaign to support the legal right for people to engage in the simple, yet revolutionary, act of saving and sharing seeds.

We held a Seed Law Hackathon last month and created a HackPad to gather every state’s seed laws to support our research and advocacy efforts and provide accessible legal information to members of the seed saving and seed library communities. We are making great progress, with the help of wonderful volunteer Roshi Sirjani, but haven’t gotten all 50 yet so we’re hoping you can help us crowdsource state seed laws! It’s fun and a great way to practice your legal research skills! If you’re interested, contact our Staff Attorney, Neil Thapar.

 

Legal Food For Thought


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URBANAGLAW.ORG GOT A FACELIFT!

Did you know that SELC has a free online legal resource library for urban farmers? Check out the (freshly redesigned) UrbanAgLaw.org for your legal questions on land access, soil safety, zoning, and more.

Are you an urban farmer, enthusiast, or expert? We need volunteers to do research and continue to improve this resource for the benefit of urban farmers everywhere. To become a volunteer researcher, send an introductory email to neil@theselc.org.

Upcoming SELC Events


HUNGER AND POVERTY MAYORAL ROUNDTABLE

October 2nd, 2014, 6:30pm - 9:30pm, Alameda County Community Food Bank, Oakland

Wondering what the Oakland mayoral candidates’ views are on hunger and poverty issues? SELC is co-hosting a mayoral roundtable with the Alameda County Community Food Bank this Thursday to find out! Join us for an opportunity to learn more about what these candidates are thinking about hunger and poverty in Oakland and find out what they plan to do about! RSVP here!


LEGAL EATS: A WORKSHOP TO SUPPORT FOOD ENTERPRISES

October 25th, 2014, 10am - 12:30pm, The Women’s Building, San Francisco

Do you own a food business in the Bay Area? Are you looking to expand your business but don't know how? Want to make sure your business is operating legally? Come to SELC's upcoming Legal Eats workshop to get the scoop on the legal requirements for operating a food business in the Bay Area! Click here to RSVP!

SELC'S 5TH ANNUAL FALL CELEBRATION!

November 18th, 2014, 6:30PM-9PM, Impact Hub Oakland

Join SELC for an evening of feasting and celebration of more just and resilient economies at our Fall Celebration! Tomorrow, October 1st, is the last day to get your Early Bird Tickets and save $20!

Featuring wine, beer, kombucha, and a full dinner from local businesses Linden Street Brewing,House Kombucha, and Local Flavor Catering! Silent Auction showcasing local Cottage Food delights, design consulting from Design Action Collective, a crowdfunding workshop from ioby, iconic clothing from Oaklandish, and much, much more!

Lively presentations from Janelle Orsi and the SELC team! Get your tickets now!


With appreciation for your support,  

The Food Circle (Chris, Christina, Janelle, Neil, and Yassi)


P.S. - Thanks to those of you who let us know of the mistake in our previous Fall Celebration announcement suggesting that you plant squash in September. What a wild thing to say! Speaking of squash, there will be tons of it at our Fall Event that you will be able to take home if you come!

Thanks to our Partners and Collaborators: