a project of the sustainable economies law center

Disclaimer: The Sustainable Economies Law Center no longer updates this website, so information may be inaccurate or out of date. We encourage you consult with a professional before taking action based on the information here. In case you’re looking for updated resources, visit our main Food Enterprise Resources page by clicking here.

Sunset Community Garden Pano

Sustainable Economies Law Center created this website to facilitate the growth of the urban agriculture movement. We offer this resource as a collection of information on laws and regulations that regulate who, how, and where urban agriculture can occur. As a collaborative effort, the content on UrbanAgLaw.org was created by a group of legal professionals and law students, and the site is curated by the Law Center.

Also, check out these handy guides we’ve created for people interested in starting worker-owned enterprises and food justice enterprises!

  • Australian gardener harvests over 400 kilos of food from her gardens
    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9ZukMyejLk&w=425&h=341] Kat Lavers describes her approach to gardening, including vertical and biointensive growing, and how important it is – and possible! – for city dwellers to be food resilient in the face of natural, financial and social crises. Happen FilmsFeb 22, 2019 (Must see film. Mike) Excerpt: In response… Read more »
  • What do gardens bring to urban ecosystems?
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    With so many weekly samples to take, everyone is needed! In the back, staff researcher Kat LaBine, and undergraduate researchers Tulsi Patel and Karl Buttle. We know that there are innumerable community and home gardens in Minneapolis and St. Paul, and we want to figure out how to capture the… Read more »
  • How urban farming is helping to feed Tokyo
    Under a subway line and atop a building. BBC News 12 Mar 2019 Japan currently produces just over a third of the food consumed at home. But it’s hoping to raise its food self-sufficiency rate to 45%. It’s a challenging task because the number of full-time farmers has been falling.… Read more »
  • Fruit Walls: Urban Farming in the 1600s
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    Picture: fruit walls in Montreuil, a suburb of Paris. In the 1800s, some Belgian and Dutch cultivators started experimenting with the placement of glass plates against fruit walls, and discovered that this could further boost crop growth. By Kris De Decker Low Tech Magazine December 24, 2015 Excerpt: Initially, fruit… Read more »
  • Purple corn and “ugly” vegetables: how neighbors build sustainable urban farms in Michigan
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    Israel Ledesma of Habitat for Humanity Kent County and Maria Moreno-Reyes are proud of the garden the community has built. Photo by Adam Bird. “We don’t discard what a lot of farms would consider seconds.” Leftover produce is donated to Haven of Rest or to local food pantries. By Claire… Read more »
  • Canada: Vancouver’s Science World balcony garden exhibit offers connection to growing food
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    From left, Lyndsay Fraser of Science World, Wesley Hooper of Life Space Gardens, and Leanne Johnson of Garden Works at the balcony garden exhibit at Science World. SCIENCE WORLD / PNG Science World teams up with Garden Works and Life Space Gardens for a balcony garden exhibit that offers a… Read more »
  • Korea: City Dwellers Find Success as Farmers After Returning to the Countryside
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    Day of Pure Brightness They made the decision to leave urban life because they preferred nature (26.1 percent), saw potential in the farming business (17.9 percent), wanted to live closer to their family (10.4 percent), and wanted to regain health (10.4 percent). By Korea Bizwire March 12, 2019 Excerpt: SEJONG,… Read more »
  • UK: The Orchard Project
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    Women pruning during the First World War. A Women’s Place Is In The Orchard! – The Historical Role Of Women In Orcharding By Cath Palgrave Then Orchard Project March 2019 Excerpt: One evening, while waiting for the bus, I got chatting to a man at the stop. He asked me… Read more »
  • New film, ‘Losing Ground,’ exposes impact of urban sprawl
    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suAlYGyzfNs&w=425&h=341] “We knew we were losing farmland. But we are actually losing farmland almost twice as fast as we thought before. 1.5 million acres a year. 175 acres every hour.” AGDAILY Staff March 14, 2019 (Must see. Mike) The agriculture industry has long fought the battle of urban sprawl.… Read more »
  • Brazil: Agricultura urbana – como ativismo na cidade de São Paulo
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    Agricultura urbana: como ativismo na cidade de São Paulo Gustavo Nagib Formato: 16×23 cm, 226 paginas Published in 2018 (in Portuguese, Ed. Annablume) Este livro está estruturado em dois capítulos. No primeiro, a intenção é conceituar a agricultura urbana e apresentá-la como atividade praticada por um tipo de ativismo urbano,… Read more »