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Maura Bennett Fruit Stands Bill Passes
by Maura Bennett, click here for bio

Program: Colorado Ag Today
Date: April 03, 2019

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Bill Boost for Produce

More of a good thing is coming to Colorado this summer.

The Colorado State Senate voted unanimously to pass HB19-1191 tol allow farm stands on any size principal use site. The measure is designed to support the agricultural industry and small businesses by deregulating where farm stands can operate.

In many jurisdictions across the state, a farm stand has not been permitted to operate if located on a principal use site that is smaller than a certain acreage size. This bill would removes what sponsor Senator Kerry Donovan called unnecessary regulation and allow local farmers and ranchers more freedom to sell what they produce.

The Coloraodo Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association President Robert Sakata says the simple plan is good for growers and the state.

“I think it’s fantastic. Everything we can do to promote local production I think is so important because of the diversity of production whether it’s a large commercial sized farm or one supporting local farm stands, I think we need it all. It’s an important part of the whole puzzle of agriculture.”

And the size of the parcel where the produce is put up for sale won't matter, a local requirement that often favors larger sellers or more commercialized operations than a farmer with a few baskets.It makes it easier for farmers and ranchers to sell their own produce so local residents can buy direct. Local governments could still require a permit or license, however, but the new law would remove some of the discouraging red tape between growers and consumers. The farm stand deregulation law would take effect July 1.

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