SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The Sacramento City Council could decide how to keep families safe by regulating fast-growing urban farms in local neighborhoods.
Organizers tell CBS13 that not only do they want to grow fruits and vegetables, but also profit.
Charles Mason of the Ubuntu Green nonprofit organization is on a mission to spring up more of backyard urban farms.
“It’s critical to the livelihood of many families,” he said.
Those supporting the effort must convince the City Council how critical they are.
Mason believes one benefit is the farms give low-income families a healthier attitude about produce.
“Just a lot of healthy behaviors just come from having an edible garden in your home, in your community,” he said.
The council must also address if urban farmers can profit from their produce.
“So if you’re a low-income family and you’re trying to supplement your income with food here’s a great way to do it,” he said.
Dave Hunter with Taylor Markets says he can see the community benefit, but he’s concerned about regulation.
“I think there’s a lot of empty lots that I think should have nice farms on them instead of just a waste land,” he said. “As long as people are using good practices and not over using pesticides and claiming they’re doing one thing and doing the other.”
Mason says he will address some concerns, including how to make sure the urban produce is safe, with city leaders.
“People who sell this are going to have to get a food handlers’ license. Whether they pay the small fee or nonprofits like us help subsidize the costs of people who do that,” he said.