Preemption occurs when the state or federal government passes a law or issues agency rules that eliminate or restrict the authority of local governments on a certain issue. When local laws are preempted, they usually have no force or effect. A preemptive state or federal law can invalidate local healthy eating policies that represent years of effort, and are traditionally difficult to repeal.
The term “local healthy food policy” can be confusing. Some think about local governments passing laws to support community access to healthy food. Some think about policies that affect food produced and sold near where they live. It can be both, and here are the differences.