Join FARFA (Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance) For The Family Farms And Local Foods Day!
Join us at the Texas Capitol in Austin on Monday, February 21 for the Family Farms and Local Foods Day! This is an opportunity for citizens from all over Texas to come together to speak up for our local food producers. You will have the chance to learn about the legislative process, meet legislators and their staff, and learn how to be an activist in support of our food freedom. Please call to make an appointment with your State Representative and Senator as soon as possible! Information on how to make appointments, RSVP, and more is posted at: http://farmandranchfreedom.org/upcoming-meetings
Can’t make it to Austin? No problem! Plan to meet with your legislators’ district office on the same day. We can provide you with materials and help you prepare. You can also help by spreading the word. We have a press release posted at: http://farmandranchfreedom.org/sff/FARFA_Education_Day_2.pdf
Update on Texas Legislative Session
Below are bills that have been filed in the Texas Legislature that may impact family farmers and local foods. FARFA will be monitoring these bills and more throughout the session. You can also get additional information on the bills at the Texas Legislature’s website:
Raw Milk: HB 75/ SB 237, by Representatives Flynn, Bonnen, Rodriguez, and Simpson and Senator Deuell, would legalize the sale of raw milk by licensed producers at farmers markets, farm stands, and through delivery. SB 237 has been assigned to the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Cottage Foods: HB 1139, by Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, would exempt producers of low-risk cottage foods who sell less directly to consumers and gross under $150,000 from the existing commercial kitchen requirements. We anticipate additional bills being filed on this issue.
Eminent Domain: SB 18, to reform the eminent domain laws, has been approved by the Senate Committee on State Affairs and is expected to be approved by the full Senate as early as today.
Water: SB 449, by Senators Watson and Estes, would enable landowners to have their property valued as agricultural use if they meet certain requirement for “water stewardship”
Equine tooth floating: HB 721, by Representative Miller, would allow livestock tooth floating to be done without a veterinarian’s supervision, enabling horse owners to choose to use an equine dentist without the expense of also paying a vet. The bill does not allow equine dentists to use sedation or tranquilizers without a veterinarian’s supervision.
Community Gardens: SB 184, by Senator Nelson, directs the General Land Office to develop a plan for the establishment of community food gardens on real property owned by the state that is not being otherwise used.
We anticipate more bills related to local foods being filed shortly, so stay tuned!