POLICY DATABASE
Policy Summary

The town declares its right to food self-governance, stating that local producers and processors are exempt from food inspections and licensing requirements for food sold directly to customers (including through farmers' markets, farm stands, or roadside stands, or delivered to the customer), or for foods prepared for, sold, or consumed at a community social event. The town claims a right to access and produce food, self-governance, and enforcement. The law purports to immunize itself from preemption by state or federal law. It also allows food producers and processors to seek waivers of liability for harms from customers.

Background Information

State Maine
Jurisdiction Name Madison
Jurisdiction Type City,
Population Size Under 5,000 People
Legal Strategies
  • Provides education, promotes awareness, or provides information
  • Expressly allows something
Reach Community-wide
Food System Category Grow; Get;

Policy Details

Refers to priority populations?
No

Health-related goal?
Unclear

"Refers to the fact that it is state policy to support ""improved health and well being,"" § 245-4 (G)(3). "

Environmental goal?
Yes

Local food production and use is the focus of this law.

Economic goal?
Yes

Stated purposes of law include: "Enhance the local economy by promoting the production and purchase of local agricultural products;" and "Support the economic viability of local food producers and processors." § 245-3 (B)(2) and (4).

Includes findings?
No

Has a stated intent or purpose?
Yes

Stated purpose is to "protect and promote unimpeded access to local foods." Specific purposes are: "(1) Provide citizens with unimpeded access to local food; (2) Enhance the local economy by promoting the production and purchase of local agricultural products; (3) Protect access to farmers' markets, roadside stands, farm-based sales and direct producer to patron sales; (4) Support the economic viability of local food producers and processors; (5) Preserve community social events where local foods are served or sold; (6) Preserve local knowledge and traditional foodways." § 245-3 (B).

Includes definitions?
Yes

§ 245-2.

Addresses implementation?
Unclear

There is a section called "Statement of law: implementation" but it seems to be more of a declaration that federal and state law can't interfere with this law, and allows customers and local food producers and processors to enter into private agreements to waive the producer's/processor's liability (presumably for food safety harms or sicknesses). Sec. 245-6.

Enforcement provisions?
No

Evaluation component?
No

Requires extra investment?
No

Code context and ordinance history

Part II, Regulatory Ordinances; Chapter 245, Local Food and Community Self-Governance.