Sustainable Agriculture & Food Venture Matters

Representative sustainable agriculture and food ventures matters in which our attorneys have been involved include:

General Corporate/General Real Estate

  • Advised commercial flower farm in Vermont on sale of business through sale of assets.
  • Provided entity formation documents and start-up advice for commercial farm in Massachusetts.
  • Assisted emerging vegan food venture with planning of friends and family convertible note seed funding round and potential additional capital raise through crowdfunding campaign.
  • Represented urban food cooperative in negotiation of lease for coop building, amendment of cooperative bylaws, and in conjunction with certain aspects of capital raise through single-state direct public offering.
  • Represented New England farmer advocacy organization on negotiation of office lease, negotiation of strategic relationship with developer of on-farm wind energy facilities, employment and other matters.
  • Provided advice to farm owners in connection with lease of goats, including milk production.
  • Served as outside general counsel for large commercial catering company and provided general business counsel to start-up restaurant and bar ventures in Colorado.
  • Drafted and negotiated many compost-to-farm sales agreements for large commercial compost producer in California.
  • Provided outside general counsel services, including assistance with commercial contracts, for soil amendment manufacturer.
  • Served as outside general counsel to large company providing land application of natural fertilizers to farms.
  • Oversaw patent application and provided legal advice in connection with product development process for novel natural slow-release fertilizer pellet coating invented by natural fertilizer and compost producer.
  • Negotiated large commercial lease for office space and commercial kitchen for largest catering company in state of Colorado.
  • Participated in Conservation Law Foundation Legal Services Food Hub legal walk-in clinic at Massachusetts Urban Farming Conference (March 12, 2016).

Project Development and Finance

  • Represented cranberry farmer as developer of 8 MW net metered wind energy project on upland portions of cranberry farm in Southeastern Massachusetts. Assisted with site control, permitting, development phase loan from Mass Clean Energy Center, net metering power purchase agreements with numerous public entities, multiple REC purchase agreements, interconnection approval, net metering qualification and sale of project to major energy company.
  • Represented developer of first two commercial anaerobic digester projects in Massachusetts, both installed on dairy farms where the host farmer and several other nearby dairy farmers comprised the key principals of the development entity. Assisted with site control, procurement of long-term supply of food processor waste from major waste hauler, sale of project commodities (electricity, net metering credits, environmental attributes, cogenerated heat, fertilizer, bedding, soil amendments), EPC contract, interconnection approval, net metering qualification, public and private debt financing, qualification for federal renewable energy financial incentives and sale of operating projects.
  • Represented various owners of agricultural land in negotiation of leases of land for solar energy development.
  • Represented various developers of ground-mounted solar energy projects on agricultural land.
  • Served as project development counsel for large citrus farm-based residuals and greenwaste composting facility in Florida, providing support to project development team on issues such as facility permitting, prime contract drafting and negotiation, construction agreements, and site control agreements.

Regulatory Counseling and Advocacy

  • Advocate for special protections for agricultural net metering facilities within net metering programs of Massachusetts and other Northeast states.
  • Worked with natural fertilizer produced to assert rights to distribute and land apply product in mid-Atlantic states in compliance with permits, applicable state and federal Rule 503 regulations and right-to-farm laws.