California Food and Farming Network

CFFN members, representing the diversity of food & farming issues facing the state from hunger and nutrition to farmer livelihood and food chain worker protections, collectively identify policies important for the state’s food and farming system. Ten value-aligned pieces of legislation were then chosen by our grassroots leader’s Steering Council as priority legislation for the whole Network to focus more deeply on.

We ask Legislators to consider these pieces of legislation to ensure California’s policies contribute to the creation of an inclusive, equitable, and ecologically regenerative food and farming system that has recognized and repaired injustices to Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) workers, producers and communities, and which generates healthy, affordable, accessible, nutritious and culturally appropriate food and other agricultural products.

2024 Priority Food + Farm Legislation

Agroecological Farming

AB 2113 (E. Garcia) | Bill Info Pesticide Mill Fee (Support if Amended)

Increases the pesticide mill fee, which provides majority funding to the Department of Pesticide Regulation. We seek amendments outlined in this factsheet that would fund a Sustainable Pest Management grant program, enforceable targets for completing reevaluations of hazardous pesticides, and an Environmental Justice Advisory Committee at DPR, with a higher mill fee increase. We also oppose a provision that would restrict eligibility to request review of permits for restricted material pesticides

AB 2734 (Connolly) | Bill Info – Improvements to the Healthy Soil Program

Amends the program to ensure all farmers can access it, including on-farm demonstration projects lasting up to 5 yrs, consultation with CA Organic Products Advisory Committee, advance payment rates of up to 50%, regional variations in input costs for incentive rates, a common application process, and equipment sharing as an allowable cost in Climate Smart Agriculture Technical Assistance Grants program

Healthy Food Access

SB 1254 (Becker) | Bill Info – Thriving Transitions: Food for Re-Entry and Ensuring Stable Homes (FRESH) Act

Allows and assists incarcerated people in applying for CalFresh benefits up to 90 days before their release to better prepare them for reentry and creates a workgroup within the Department of Social Services to begin recommendations for a statewide reentry process

AB 1975 (Bonta) | Bill Info– Medically Supportive Food and Nutrition

Transitions food-based interventions from pilot to permanent Medi-Cal benefits and launches an advisory workgroup to support the writing of related regulations

AB 660 (Irwin) Bill Info & AB 2577 (Irwin) | Bill Info– Food Expiration Date Reform

Confusing and misleading expiration date labels are a leading cause of food waste up and down the supply chain. AB 660 would implement the industry’s suggested best practices to require food manufacturers to use uniform terminology when labeling their products, and AB 2577 is a companion bill that would establish a regulatory process for evaluating these types of requirements

Farmworker and Food Chain Worker Advancement

SB 1089 (Smallwood-Cuevas) | Bill Info– Grocery and Pharmacy Closure Notice

Requires 90-day notice to workers and community for proposed grocery or pharmacy store closure. Notice will also be sent to CDSS to maintain a list of up to date grocery stores that accept food benefits. Bill is part of CA Legislative Black Caucus’s Reparations Package

SB 1105 (Padilla) | Bill Info Leave for Farmworkers During Climate Emergencies

Requires that paid sick leave granted to agricultural employees can also be utilized to avoid smoke, heat, or flooding conditions created by a local or state emergency, allowing workers to avoid personal financial ruin when they need to stay home from work for their safety

Additional priority bills for the CA Farmworker Advocacy Working Group can be found here.

Regional Food Ecosystems

AB 1961 (Wicks) | Bill Info – Strategic Masterplan to End Hunger in CA

Creates a task force of state and community representatives to develop a strategic master plan aimed at ending hunger in CA through intersectional lenses

AB 408 (Wilson) | Bill Info – Food & Agriculture Climate Resilience Bond

Puts a $3.6 billion bond measure in front of California voters to invest in programs and infrastructure to strengthen our food and farming system across agriculture, farmworkers, healthy and culturally relevant food access, and regional food economies.

AB 2313 (Bennett) | Bill Info– Regional Farmer Equipment & Cooperative Resources Assistance Pilot Program

Establishes a program at the California Department of Food and Agriculture to fund resource conservation districts, County agricultural commissioners, University of California Cooperative Extensions, tribal entities, and nonprofits serving small, socially-disadvantaged and/or limited resource farmers to run equipment sharing programs to make it easier for farmers to access the equipment needed to implement agroecological practices.

Support for Additional Food and Farming Issues

The following legislation was also chosen as important issues to support.

AB 1864 (Connolly) | Bill Info – Pesticide Use Near Schools

AB 2150 (Arambula) | Bill Info – Public Social Services in Higher Education

AB 2595 (L. Rivas) | Bill Info – Summer Caregiver Meals

AB 2786 (Bonta) | Bill Info – Mobile Farmers’ Markets

SB 675 (Limón) | Bill Info – Prescribed Grazing for Wildfire Mitigation

SB 1448 (Hurtado) | Bill Info – Increasing small farm access to land and markets

CFFN’s positions on legislation do not necessarily represent the positions of all of our members.

Network Members