Background: Southeastern Massachusetts Livestock Association (SEMALA) is a nonprofit organization comprised of farmers and local food advocates dedicated to addressing problems facing livestock farmers in southeastern New England. SEMALA was formed after the local slaughterhouse closed in 2007 and its members identified the need for a local animal processing facility. As such, SEMALA seeks to build and operate a new USDA-inspected slaughterhouse and processing facility in Westport, MA. This facility will primarily service southeastern Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and eastern Connecticut.
In addition, SEMALA is working with local educational institutions to develop curricula involving the processing of animals and value-added products and to involve students in studying the economic impacts of this facility on their community.
Legal Need: SEMALA contacted the Legal Food Hub seeking to form a new nonprofit entity.
The Relationship: The Legal Food Hub matched SEMALA with lawyers from Ropes & Gray who helped create a new nonprofit entity so that the association can continue to plan for a new slaughterhouse facility.