We envision networks of many local food systems comprised of community controlled, ecologically sound, and socially just enterprises.

About Our Food Program

Our food system is not well served by today’s predominant food business models, which incentivize growth, shareholder profit maximization, absentee ownership, and exploitation of resources. The ownership and governance structures of an enterprise largely determine the motivations that drive it. And the large, centralized food producers that dominate food systems today are usually owned and governed by white men and driven by financial bottom lines to the detriment of more important ends: equitable control over the food system, providing healthy food and fair economic opportunity to people working within the food system, and redressing injustice.

Systemic oppression within our food system has most negatively impacted rural communities, communities of color, and low-income communities, so our focus is on supporting these historically and currently marginalized communities to take back control over the economic engines of our food system. The cornerstone of our work is the belief that enterprises should be owned and controlled by the workers and communities who depend on them, and this is true for the food economy as much as any other sector. We believe that the right to define how local food systems are organized belong to the people who participate throughout the food chain, from the farm to the compost pile.

Sustainable Economies Law Center’s Food Program provides education, research, advice and advocacy to advance food systems built around this vision.

For information specifically about our Farmland Program, click here.

Food Policy Advocacy

Expanding Sales of Homemade Food in California

California Seed Exchange Democracy Act (2016)

Save Seed Sharing! Campaign (2014-16)

California Local Economies Securities Act (2015-16)

California Neighborhood Food Act (2014)

California Homemade Food Act (2012)

Resources for Food Enterprises

We provide free legal guides on various topics for small and medium scale food and farm enterprises. Click here!

Food News

For all the latest updates about our Food Program, read our Food News blog. Click here!

Showing 3 reactions

  • followed this page 2017-02-10 12:29:28 -0800
  • commented 2015-03-13 21:08:31 -0700
    I would like to know if the legislation for the The Neighborhood Food Act and The California Homemade Food Act are still available to look at elsewhere. The links are down. Thank!
  • commented 2014-06-20 08:45:02 -0700
    Which cities have adopted policies that prioritize using city owned lots for local food growing? I’d like to learn more about these policies.

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