Three Questions with Emily Broad Leib of Harvard Law School

Emily Broad Leib

Food Tank, in partnership with the George Washington University, is hosting the 1st Annual Food Tank Summit in Washington D.C. on January 21-22, 2015.

This two-day event will feature more than 75 different speakers from the food and agriculture field. Researchers, farmers, chefs, policy makers, government officials, and students will come together for panels on topics including food waste, urban agriculture, family farmers, farm workers, and more.

Food Tank recently had the opportunity to speak with Emily Broad Leib, of Harvard Law School, who will be speaking at the summit.

Food Tank (FT): What will your message be at the Food Tank Summit?

Emily Broad Leib (EBL): I’m going to talk about the role that legal and policy research must play in improving the food system, the importance of collaborating across disciplines to identify innovative new approaches, and one way that we are using a university-wide student challenge to help foster that collaboration and innovation

(FT): How are you contributing to building a better food system?

(EBL): The Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC) was established in 2010 to link Harvard Law School students with opportunities to work with clients and communities on various food law and policy issues. The FLPC provides legal advice to nonprofits and government agencies seeking to increase access to healthy foods, prevent diet-related diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes, and reduce barriers to market entry for small-scale and sustainable food producers, while educating law students about ways to use law and policy to impact the food system. The FLPC engages a strong policy orientation as well as substantive expertise in the food system to assist a range of federal, state, and local clients around the United States—from Massachusetts to Mississippi—in understanding the legal and policy regimes that apply to food production and sales.

(FT): What are the biggest obstacles or challenges you face in achieving your organization's goals?

(EBL): One ongoing struggle has been helping people to understand the role that law and lawyers play in this movement, and see us as a resource. We are working to create of cohort of food lawyers and food advocates across the country in order to take our part of the food movement to the next level. We hope to see food systems being changed county by county and state by state through the work of local citizens taking an active interest in their food system, and connecting with the legal and policy expertise needed to move the needle. We also struggle to educate funders about the important work we are doing, and to get support for policy change. We hope to find passionate leaders and funders who share our vision of using legal and policy expertise as tools for transforming the food system, and want to support our work in future successful enterprises.

The event is SOLD OUT, but interested participants can sign up for the live-stream HERE. Or JOIN US for dinner and a reception to celebrate Food Tank's two-year anniversary on January 21st at 5:30pm EST. This event will also sell out fast, REGISTER NOW.