Throughout the United States, local and state laws facilitate many opportunities to utilize back yards, vacant land, and residential kitchens to produce foods for sale and build local food economies. Food Sovereignty & Food Production in East Cleveland: A Legal and Policy Guide to State and Local Law shares some of those opportunities and presents a roadmap for identifying what foods can be produced and sold with little or no regulatory hurdles, using East Cleveland, Ohio as a case study. The report was generated in partnership with the non-profit organization Loiter, which works for economic and environmental justice in its home city of East Cleveland and commissioned FLPC to conduct this research in support of its work.
Despite its focus on the laws and policies of East Cleveland, this report provides a roadmap for evaluating and establishing profit-generating, community food systems with minimal upfront investment. The opportunities identified in this report seek to deploy the resources already present in the community to increase the power and financial well-being of residents. While regulations may differ from state to state and city to city, this report offers a framework to explore the feasibility of implementing these strategies in other municipalities and provides a roadmap to identifying helpful state and local policies.