Thursday, July 28, 2011

Our Korean Friend and Colleague

Last year, about this time, we met Professor Tae Huan Keum when he first arrived in Fayetteville.  He had chosen to attend the LL.M. Program as a degree candidate for his sabbatical project.  Professor Keum came to us with a distinguished record.  He serves as a Law Professor, teaching Administrative Law and Agricultural Law in the College of Law at Yeunganam University in the Republic of Korea.  Professor Keum earned his LL.B. degree, an LL.M. degree in Administrative Law, and an LL.D. degree in Administrative Law from Seoul National University, Republic of Korea.  He has an excellent publication record, with a number of articles on American law topics.

We thoroughly enjoyed Professor Keum's contribution to the LL.M. Program.  He did extremely well in all of his coursework, and he completed his thesis this summer, drafting a comprehensive review of the controversy involving U.S. beef trade with Korea and BSE concerns.  His hard work, professionalism, and dedication to learning was an inspiration to us all.

Last night I received a wonderful email from our friend, Professor Keum.  He reports that he is now back in Korea, settling back into his life as a law professor.  He thanks everyone for "one year's wonderful experience in Fayetteville" and notes that he was introduced to "American agriculture, smart students, enthusiastic professors, and the Razorback Football team. . . . From the Introduction to the Law of Food Agriculture class to all the classes including Food, Farming, and Sustainability, I was given new insights and was made to consider what the solution is for the problems of agriculture."

Professor Keum will soon be working on a book on Agriculture Law in Korea, and this October, he will be presenting on a “comparison between Korean agriculture and American agriculture” at an academic conference.

Professor Keum thanked all of the "smart colleagues" in his classes for their great kindness in helping him with translation issues.  And, he concluded, "I can say my sabbatical was wonderful, and I enjoyed it. I am looking forward to seeing you in Korea and repaying your kindness."  What a wonderful gift he gave to our Program -  we now all have a distinguished friend in Korea.

Monday, July 18, 2011

LL.M. Classes Set for Fall 2011

Classes in the LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law begin the week of August 22 and extend through December 2.

We will be welcoming the class of 2012 with an orientation session on August 22 and are planning a dinner with our friend and distinguished visitor, Professor Neil Hamilton, on Wednesday or Thursday night of that week. We have a great class of LL.M. candidates enrolled (bio's will be posted soon), and we are looking forward to a great Fall semester.

Here is a list of our fall specialized courses:

 Introduction to the Law of Food & Agriculture (1 credit condensed course)
August 25-27 (note this includes a Saturday a.m. session at the Fayetteville Farmers’ Market)
This special orientation course provides an overview of the legal and policy issues presented by the production of food and fiber, including a discussion of structural changes in agriculture, sustainability issues, and trends in direct marketing and consumer interest. This course is taught by Visiting Professor Neil Hamilton.

Agriculture & the Environment (3 credit full semester course)
Tuesday and Thursday, 1:00-2:30 p.m.
Agriculture is increasingly criticized for its impact on the environment. This course examines the tensions between the desire to produce food and fiber efficiently and concern for the protection of natural resources. The application of the major federal environmental statutes to agricultural operations will be presented, with discussion of the exemptions for agriculture and the impact of industrialized agricultural production. Sustainability, ethical considerations and international environmental issues are woven into the course. This course is taught by Professor Christopher Kelley.

Food Law & Policy (2 credit full semester course)
Tuesday and Thursday, 11:00-11:50 a.m.
This course examines the network of U.S. federal laws that govern food safety and food labeling and considers how well this network works to protect American consumers. An overview of regulation by both the Food & Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture is provided. Policy considerations are discussed in light of current criticisms of our food system. Current issues in the news are integrated into a study of the legal framework. This course is taught by Professor Susan Schneider.

Food, Farming & Sustainability (3 credit full semester course)
Wednesday and Friday, 9:15-10:30 a.m.
This course is adapted from the casebook by the same name authored by Professor Schneider. It consists of a mix of traditional lecture/discussion and special presentations. The course is designed to provide an issues-based introduction to a wide range of complex topics that make up the body of agricultural law. The course is divided into discreet units designed to introduce some of the critical legal issues facing the industry and consumers today. This course is taught by Professor Susan Schneider, with a number of distinguished guest lecturers. Special arrangements for different class times will sometimes be needed to accommodate these lecturers.

Regulation of Livestock Sales (1 credit full semester course)
Friday, 11:00-11:50 a.m.
This course examines livestock and poultry sales with a particular focus on the regulation of sales under the Packers & Stockyards Act. The prohibition against unfair practices and the controversy regarding the definition of this phrase, mandatory price reporting, industry concentration, anti-trust issues, and the recently proposed GIPSA rules are all discussed. This course is taught by Professor Vince Chadick.

Selected Issues in Food Law (1 credit full semester course)
Wednesday, 11:00-11:50 a.m.
This course explores current issues of food law with a different topic presented each week. Each student in the class will work with Professor Schneider to select and present on a topic of particular interest to them. Topics chosen in previous sessions have included the use of the term “grass fed” in meat labeling, the regulation of pet food, government efforts to address the obesity problem, the regulation of bottled water and humane animal slaughter laws. This course is taught by Professor Susan Schneider. Class times may vary to accommodate student presentations.

Unsafe Food: Policy and Litigation (1 credit condensed course)
Week of November 14
This condensed course was designed and is taught by nationally recognized trial lawyer, Bill Marler, founding partner of the law firm of Marler Clark based in Seattle, Washington. It focuses on a study of actual cases of serious foodborne illness and the litigation brought on behalf of victims.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Celebrating the Fayetteville Farmers Market

Northwest Arkansas is home to many farmers' markets, but none can top the very popular Fayetteville Farmers' Market on the town square.  This year, it's open from April 2nd - November 19th; on Saturdays from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 7:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

I took the photo to the left yesterday. I happily purchased fresh blueberries, peaches, lettuce, cabbage, cucumbers, zucchini, arugula, summer squash, new potatoes, green beans, and a lovely potted lavender plant.
For the last 37 years, the downtown square market has offered the finest in locally produced vegetables, fruits, flowers, plants, meats, baked goods, honey, eggs, jams, crafts, and fine art from the 4 county area. . . .  [E]ach market day is a feast for the eyes, ears and palate, with a riot of color, aromas, and sounds. Known as the “Crown Jewel of Fayetteville,” the Saturday market is alive with street performers, tourists, and the residents of Northwest Arkansas visiting with over 60 vendors around the beautiful square gardens. 

For animal lovers, there is a special recent addition to the festivities. Fayetteville Animal Shelter volunteers walk dogs from the animal shelter, each wearing little "adopt me" vests - with many happy results!

A couple years ago when LL.M. alumnus, Andrew Hopper was with us, Andrew did a podcast of a trip to the market.  You can listen to it via the link on our About Northwest Arkansas on the LL.M. Program website.

We will be visiting the downtown Farmers Market and interviewing vendors as part of our orientation class for the new LL.M. candidates, An Introduction to the Law of Food & Agriculture taught by our good friend and distinguished Visiting Professor, Neil Hamilton.