Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Spring Semester Classes Offer Variety and Specialization


Each semester when we prepare the class schedule, I am amazed at the breadth of agricultural and food law as a discipline.  While some may think of it as a narrow specialty, nothing could be farther from the truth.  Spring Semester classes provide a clear example. 

Consider our Spring 20015 class offerings in the LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law at the University of Arkansas School of Law: 



Environmental Regulation of Agriculture 

Examination of  the major federal environmental statutes applicable to agricultural operations with attention to current cases and controversies under those laws.  It also explores the regulatory authority and enforcement practices of the EPA and other agencies.


Regulated Markets in Agriculture 

Study of the economic regulation of specific sectors of the agricultural industry focusing on perishable agricultural commodities (fruits & vegetables), dairy products, and 
the Packers & Stockyards Act.


Agricultural Perspectives

Agriculture has a rich and varied history, and today’s issues are often best understood in the context of this history.  This course examines a wide range of social, environmental, and economic issues, considering their origin and how history is reflected in today’s policies. 


Food Safety Litigation

Special condensed course taught by the leaders in food safety litigation:  
Bill Marler and Denis Stearns of Marler Clark.


Farmed Animal Welfare Law

Examination of the legal issues involved in determining welfare standards for animals raised for food. In addition to introducing federal animal welfare and humane slaughter laws, state referenda, state law standards, and so-called “ag gag” laws are introduced.  


Selected Issues in Agricultural & Food Law 

This specialized class combines current legal and policy issues in a cohesive study. 
This semester our topic is Agricultural Business Issues.


Food Justice Law & Policy

Survey of the legal and policy issues raised by the food justice movement. Topics covered include food insecurity and poverty, public health concerns such as obesity, the economics of healthy eating, food deserts, and food waste.


Agricultural Labor Law

Study of the legal, social, and economic issues that arise from the extensive use of migrant labor in U.S. agricultural operations. Topics include agricultural exemptions from labor laws, the Migrant & Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, and agriculture’s reliance on undocumented workers.


Legal Issues: Indigenous Food & Agriculture 

Exploration of the complex interaction of tribal law, treaties, and federal agricultural and food laws, including property law applicable to tribal lands.


Global Food Security

Survey of the role of law and policy in affecting problems of global food security in the face of increasing population, changing diets, environmental pressures, and climate change.


Special Topics: Food Labeling  and Food Safety 

Advanced study of emerging issues in food labeling and food safety, building on what we covered in our Fall semester Food Law & Policy class. 


Agricultural Biotechnology

Study of the regulation of agricultural biotechnology, including the approval process for new technologies, the patenting of new products and technologies, and the 
restrictions associated with their use.


Intellectual Property for Agricultural & Food Products

Study of the intellectual property laws and treaties that apply to the identification of food and agricultural products.


Local/Regional Food Systems & the Law 

This course examines efforts to re-establish local and regional food systems and explores the attendant legal and policy issues.  Taught by nationally recognized agricultural and food law scholar, Neil Hamilton from Drake University Law School, this year's class will involve a look at land tenure issues, how access to farmland affects beginning farmers, and 
how land tenure affects our food system.






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