Selling Value-Added Products on the Farm

If you are a farmer interested in opening a farmstand on your property, this webinar will teach you about key federal, state and local regulations that impact small food producers who seek to make and sell value-added products from home.  We will cover what’s allowed when selling meat, eggs, dairy, cottage foods such as pickles and baked goods, and more, and explore the legal solutions that can help these businesses grow and thrive.  

Presenter: Legal Services Specialist, Christine Dzujna, of Farm-To-Consumer Legal Defense Fund

Onboarding New Employees

Congratulations! Your small business is ready to hire your first employees. This is both an exciting and daunting process. Luckily, we have Tara Walker and Bill Wahrer of Bernstein Shur Portland, Maine who will walk you through this process. They will cover common legal traps for the hiring manager in the hiring and interview process, she will provide a checklist of best practices, and recommended documentation for your new employees.

Presenters: Attorneys Tara Walker and Bill Wahrer of Bernstein Shur

Media and Marketing 101

As a small business, you are likely using emails, text, and social media to advertise your business and communicate with your customers. You may also have your own webpage spotlighting customer reviews and other content. With all these forms of social media and communication comes a web of laws that are difficult to navigate. During this webinar, a team of attorneys from Bernstein Shur will help you detangle these laws. We will cover topics such as email, text, and social media marketing, claim substantiation, website policies, the proper use of logos and other copyrighted material, endorsements, testimonials, and customer reviews, and other hot topics in advertising law.

Presenters: Attorneys Elliot Brake, Kevan Lee Deckelmann, Chad W. Higgins, Matthew J. Saldaña

Hosting a Food Focused Event: The Legal Side of a Delicious Activity

Hosting an event with food on your farm is a great way to gather your community, educate the public about farming, and grow your business. Watch this webinar to learn about next steps to safely and legally offer samples, host a tasting, farm to table meal, or other event with food on your farm. During the session you will hear from Corie Pierce, owner of Bread and Butter Farm in Shelburne, Vermont and regular host of burger nights. You will also hear from Andrew Marchev, Legal Fellow at the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems and Lisa Chase, Agritourism Expert at University of Vermont Extension.

Presenters: Corie Pierce, Bread and Butter Farm Vermont, Dr. Lisa Chase, University of Vermont, Attorney Andrew Marchev, Fellow at Vermont Law School

Laws of the Land: What to Know About Your Farm BEFORE You Commit

You’ve heard the phrase ‘location, location, location’ when it comes to choosing a home. It’s no different for farmers when choosing a site for their farm business. All sites come with unique conditions that impact the farm’s viability, including physical characteristics, zoning restrictions, federal and state permitting requirements, and pre-existing third-party rights of neighbors, landlords, tenants, easement holders, or lenders. This webinar will cover the who, what, how, where, and most importantly, why, of identifying the unique characteristics and regulatory requirements tied to your future farm property before you sign on the dotted line.

Presenters: Attorneys Laura Hartz and Stacey Caulk of Drummond Woodsum

Arrendamiento de Terrenos Agrícolas

Si bien muchos arrendamientos de granjas se realizan con un acuerdo verbal, esta práctica no es una buena idea porque no hay un acuerdo por escrito en caso de desacuerdo entre las partes. Un contrato de arrendamiento bien escrito hará que los términos del arrendamiento sean claros y dejará menos oportunidades para malentendidos y reducirá la probabilidad de un conflicto entre el propietario y el agricultor.

Introduction to Land Leases

In New England, many farmers choose to lease their farmland instead of buying it. It is important to think about what your farmland lease will include and advocate for yourself so that the provisions that you need are in the lease. This guide discusses several of the issues that you should think about including in your lease with the help of your lawyer.

Farmland Leases

While many farm leases are done with a handshake, this practice is not a good idea because there is no written agreement in the event of a disagreement between the parties. A well-written lease agreement will make the lease terms clear and leave less opportunity for misunderstanding and reduces the likelihood of a potential conflict between a landowner and a farmer.

Alternative Ways to Buy The Farm

This Guide explores the following alternative ways to purchase farmland:

  • Seller-financed land acquisition
  • Purchase by installments
  • Lease with an option to purchase.

Farm Succession Advising: An Attorney Training Guide

Among beginning (and other) farmers’ biggest challenges is accessing land, including land and farms in the hands of older farmers. Therefore, how those farmers transition their farms to the next generation (family or unrelated) is of utmost importance. Land For Good’s Training Guide provides attorneys with solid legal background material and technical tools to use in assisting farmer clients to develop their farm succession plans.

Your Legal Toolkit for Starting a Farm

When you’re starting a farm business, there are lots of important legal issues to consider, from what type of business entity you’ll form to how to protect yourself from liability and plan for the future. This comprehensive webinar will equip farmers with the legal know-how to tackle these key decisions and start off on a strong legal footing.

Elements of a Farmland Lease

When a farmer works with a landowner to put together a farmland lease, there are many important considerations. This webinar will inform farmers and nonprofit farm organizations about the key elements that should be in a farmland lease.

Presenter: Jeff Polubinski, Gravel & Shea.

Labeling Your Food Product

Small food businesses and farms with value-added processing often sell their products locally, but understanding the Food and Drug Administration’s rules for labeling those products can be challenging. This webinar will prepare you to feel confident creating a food label and selling your product.

Presenters: Rachel Gartner & Zac Maciejewski, Faegre, Drinker Biddle and Reath.

Starting your Farm or Food Business: Succession Planning

When you’re forming your LLC or other business entity, it is important to plan for the future. This webinar will prepare you with key questions to consider about succession planning when forming your business.

Presenter: Kim Memmesheimer, Hoefle, Phoenix, Gormley & Roberts, PLLC.

A Working Guide to Current Use Taxation for Agricultural Lands

Developed by Vermont Law School’s Center for Agriculture and Food Systems, “A Working Guide to Current Use Taxation for Agricultural Lands” provides an overview of current use policies across the U.S. 

Current use programs—which generally allow farmers to pay taxes on their land at current (agricultural) value rather than its assessed value for another non-farming use—are an important tool in the farmland preservation toolbox. 

Written by Vermont Law School adjunct professor Jess Phelps, this guide explains the concept of current use and examines current use policies and programs. Identifying common challenges and opportunities, it aims to help policymakers adapt current use programs to modern farmland preservation needs. It also dives into a case study of current use in Vermont to explore how a program functions at the farm level, and includes a handy reference guide to state current use statutes across the country.

This guide was funded by the National Agricultural Library, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

A Guide to Protecting Your Recipes

When it comes to food businesses, preventing others from using your recipes and processes is an important aspect to ensuring a competitive edge. A concept in the law called a trade secret may offer protection for recipes and food production processes. Many companies have trade secrets that are essential to their operation and success. This is a guide that will introduce you to what a trade secret is, what must be done to establish it, and how it is protected.

Reorganizing a Farm Business with Chapter 12 of the Bankruptcy Code: A Brief Guide

Farm reorganization through chapter 12 is a powerful tool for farmers seeking to restructure burdensome debt, change production models, or even transition a farm to the next generation. It can help farming and fishing operations avoid financial distress and allow them to transform their operation or transfer it to the next generation—without requiring liquidation or financial insolvency. This guide covers who is involved, who is eligible, the benefits, and how it works. 

Intro to Co-Op Formation

 A cooperative (“co-op”) is a type of for-profit business that is communally owned and democratically managed by its members. This legal guide covers common types of co-ops, tax benefits of co-ops, benefits and risks, as well as how to form a co-op.

¿Qué es la mediación?

La mediación es un proceso voluntario en el que un tercero neutral (el mediador) ayuda a las partes a resolver su disputa o conflicto facilitando su negociación. La mediación se puede utilizar como alternativa a una demanda. Esta guía explicará los entresijos de la mediación, así como sus ventajas como herramienta para la resolución de conflictos.

Comprar la granja – parte 2

Una vez que se ha negociado un trato, un agricultor trabaja con el propietario de la tierra para comprar tierras agrícolas por el precio de compra acordado. La Parte II de esta Guía se centra en

(i) los elementos de un Acuerdo de compraventa,

ii) el proceso de investigación de “debida diligencia” que todo agricultor debe realizar,

(iii) la escritura y otros documentos de cierre de la adquisición, y

(iv) el cierre.

Comprar la granja – parte 1

Los agricultores pueden obtener derechos sobre las tierras agrícolas de diversas formas, por ejemplo, mediante un contrato de arrendamiento con el propietario de las tierras agrícolas, compartiendo la propiedad de la tierra con otros o adquiriendo la propiedad total (título de “tarifa simple”) de las tierras agrícolas. La Parte I de esta Guía se centra en:

(i) los diferentes tipos de propiedad de la tierra,

ii) las ventajas y desventajas de comprar la tierra de cultivo directamente a través de la propiedad simple de pago, y

(iii) consideraciones a la hora de localizar la tierra de cultivo adecuada para comprar.

Operación de una propiedad unipersonal

Como propietario de una granja o empresa alimentaria, usted elige cómo desea operar. Elegir la estructura empresarial adecuada es importante porque afecta a muchos aspectos de su empresa. Por ejemplo, puede influir en el tratamiento fiscal, la exposición al riesgo y la responsabilidad y el control personal sobre el negocio. Los nuevos agricultores o empresarios alimentarios a menudo operan como propietarios únicos. Esta guía legal analiza las características y obligaciones de operar su negocio como propietario único.

Introducción a las marcas comerciales

Su negocio ofrece productos frescos y de alta calidad y alimentos de valor agregado y se ha ganado una buena reputación en la comunidad. Pero, ¿puede proteger su “marca”, la buena voluntad y la confianza que ha desarrollado para su negocio? ¿Puede evitar que los competidores se monten en los faldones de su buena reputación? Aprenda a utilizar las marcas comerciales sólidas de manera eficaz. Esta Guía Lightning establece cómo obtener y proteger su marca comercial y cómo identificar la infracción de marca registrada.

Conceptos básicos de la ley de derechos de autor

La ley de derechos de autor puede parecer complicada. Pero es simplemente una ley que dice que si creas algo, entonces eres el propietario. Para las empresas, los derechos de autor pueden aplicarse a las cosas que usa todos los días, como los gráficos utilizados en sitios web y en publicidad o contenido de blogs. Aprenda a crear y proteger sus derechos de autor. Esta guía examina cómo proteger sus propios materiales con derechos de autor y evitar el uso indebido de los derechos de autor que pertenecen a otros.