Farm Fresh Rhode Island Gets Help with Labor and Employment Policies

About: Founded in 2004, Farm Fresh Rhode Island’s mission is to grow a local food system that values the environment, health, and quality of life for farmers and eaters of Rhode Island. The nonprofit’s goals include preserving Rhode Island farmland, building healthier communities, strengthening Rhode Island’s community-based businesses, increasing access to fresh food, and improving the impact of food production and distribution on the environment. Their programming ranges across areas, from access to education to distribution. They run 11 summer farmers markets; operate a market mobile produce aggregator and distribution system; and provide training and employment for youth from the Department of Children, Youth, and Family’s Juvenile Justice Corrections Services. They also offer bonus bucks SNAP incentives, Veggie Box subscriptions, farm to school programming, and education and access programming for low-income seniors. Farm Fresh is an integral component of the Rhode Island food system.

Legal Issue: Farm Fresh came to the Legal Food Hub seeking legal assistance to review labor and employment policies and practices and ensure that they are up to speed on future expected changes in the law.

The Relationship: The Legal Food Hub connected Farm Fresh Rhode Island with labor and employment attorneys at Nixon Peabody to provide guidance as the organization works on updating employee handbooks and makes plans for its future practices. Nixon Peabody’s Rhode Island office has special expertise in employment law, so it was a perfect fit, ensuring that Farm Fresh, an important organization supporting Rhode Island’s food system, receives the legal support it needs.