Chapter 15.64 RCW



15.64.010Director's duties and powers.
15.64.030Studies of farm marketing problemsRules.
15.64.040Use of funds for studiesJoint studies with other agencies.
15.64.050Small farm direct marketing assistance programCreatedDuties.
15.64.060Farm-to-school program.

Director's duties and powers.

The director shall investigate and promote the economical and efficient distribution of farm products, and in so doing may cooperate with federal agencies and agencies of this and other states engaged in similar activities. For such purposes he or she may:
(1) Maintain a market news service by bulletins and through newspapers, giving information as to prices, available supplies of different farm products, demand in local and foreign markets, freight rates, and any other data of interest to producers and consumers;
(2) Aid producers and consumers in establishing economical and efficient methods of distribution, promoting more direct business relations by organizing cooperative societies of buyers and sellers and by other means reducing the cost and waste in the distribution of farm products;
(3) Investigate the methods of intermediaries handling farm products, and in so doing, he or she may hear complaints and suggestions and may visit places of business of all such intermediaries and may examine under oath, the officers and employees thereof;
(4) If he or she finds further legislation on this subject advisable, he or she shall make recommendations thereon to the governor not later than the fifteenth of November of each even-numbered year;
(5) Investigate the possibilities of direct dealing between the producer and consumer by parcel post and other mail order methods;
(6) Assist in the obtaining and employment of farm labor, and to that end cooperate with federal, state, and municipal agencies engaged in similar work;
(7) Investigate the methods, charges, and delays of transportation of farm products and assist producers in relation thereto.

Studies of farm marketing problemsRules.

The director shall enact rules and regulations governing the pursuit of technical studies of farm marketing problems. Said studies shall be under the supervision of the director of the experimental station of Washington State University. The extension service of Washington State University shall provide for dissemination to the public of knowledge gained by such studies.
[ 1961 c 11 § 15.64.030. Prior: 1947 c 280 § 2; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 2909-2.]

Use of funds for studiesJoint studies with other agencies.

Moneys appropriated to the department for agricultural marketing research shall be expended by the department to further studies by the department, the experiment station of Washington State University and the extension service of Washington State University. The studies shall be made jointly or in conjunction with those made by the United States Department of Agriculture as provided for in the Flannigan-Hope Act, Title II "The Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946" Public Law 733. All funds appropriated shall be expended jointly and as matching funds with any federal funds made available for such purposes.
[ 1961 c 11 § 15.64.040. Prior: 1947 c 280 § 1; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 2909-1.]

Small farm direct marketing assistance programCreatedDuties.

(1) The small farm direct marketing assistance program is created.
(2) The director shall employ a small farm direct marketing assistant.
(3) The small farm direct marketing assistance program shall assist small farms in their direct marketing efforts. In carrying out this duty the program shall:
(a) Assist small farms in complying with federal, state, and local rules and regulations as they apply to direct marketing of agricultural products;
(b) Assist in developing infrastructure to increase direct marketing opportunities for small farms;
(c) Provide information on direct marketing opportunities for small farms;
(d) Promote localized food production systems;
(e) Increase access to information for farmers wishing to sell farm products directly to consumers;
(f) Identify and help reduce market barriers facing small farms in direct marketing;
(g) Assist in developing and submitting proposals to grant programs to assist small farm direct marketing efforts; and
(h) Perform other functions that will assist small farms in directly marketing their products.


Severability2007 c 522: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [ 2007 c 522 § 1801.]
Effective date2007 c 522: "This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and takes effect immediately [May 15, 2007]." [ 2007 c 522 § 1802.]
Findings2001 2nd sp.s. c 3: "The legislature finds that:
(1) Many consumers in this state appreciate and seek out the opportunity to purchase local farm products.
(2) Consumers and small-scale farmers would both benefit from increased opportunities to market farm products locally. Direct marketing provides farmers with the opportunity to realize an increased share of consumers' food dollars and provides consumers with a greater opportunity to support local agriculture and understand farm operations, farm culture, and the role farms play in meeting our food needs.
(3) The state would greatly benefit from a focused effort to increase the economic viability and profitability of small farms through increasing their ability to market their products directly to consumers.
(4) Direct marketing opportunities are often not feasible for farmers to undertake because of market barriers and the difficulty of obtaining information related to marketing.
(5) A direct marketing assistance program for small farmers could provide the needed information, technical assistance, and barrier clearing work that is a key to increasing direct marketing of farm products." [ 2001 2nd sp.s. c 3 § 1.]

Farm-to-school program.

(1) A farm-to-school program is created within the department to facilitate increased procurement of Washington grown food by schools.
(2) The department, in consultation with the department of health, the office of the superintendent of public instruction, the department of enterprise services, and Washington State University, shall, in order of priority:
(a) Identify and develop policies and procedures to implement and evaluate the farm-to-school program, including coordinating with school procurement officials, buying cooperatives, and other appropriate organizations to develop uniform procurement procedures and materials, and practical recommendations to facilitate the purchase of Washington grown food by the common schools. These policies, procedures, and recommendations shall be made available to school districts to adopt at their discretion;
(b) Assist food producers, distributors, and food brokers to market Washington grown food to schools by informing them of food procurement opportunities, bid procedures, school purchasing criteria, and other requirements;
(c) Assist schools in connecting with local producers by informing them of the sources and availability of Washington grown food as well as the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of purchasing Washington grown food;
(d) Identify and recommend mechanisms that will increase the predictability of sales for producers and the adequacy of supply for purchasers;
(e) Identify and make available existing curricula, programs and publications that educate students on the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of preparing and consuming locally grown food;
(f) Support efforts to advance other farm-to-school connections such as school gardens or farms and farm visits; and
(g) As resources allow, seek additional funds to leverage state expenditures.
(3) The department in cooperation with the office of the superintendent of public instruction shall collect data on the activities conducted pursuant to chapter 215, Laws of 2008 and communicate such data biennially to the appropriate committees of the legislature beginning November 15, 2009. Data collected may include the numbers of schools and farms participating and any increases in the procurement of Washington grown food by the common schools.
(4) As used in this section, RCW 28A.335.190, and 28A.235.170, "Washington grown" means grown and packed or processed in Washington.


FindingsIntent2008 c 215: "(1) The legislature recognizes that the benefits of local food production include stewardship of working agricultural lands; direct and indirect jobs in agricultural production, food processing, tourism, and support industries; energy conservation and greenhouse gas reductions; and increased food security through access to locally grown foods.
(2) The legislature finds there is a direct correlation between adequate nutrition and a child's development and school performance. Children who are hungry or malnourished are at risk of lower achievement in school.
(3) The legislature further finds that adequate nutrition is also necessary for the physical health of adults, and that some communities have limited access to healthy fruits and vegetables and quality meat and dairy products, a lack of which may lead to high rates of diet-related diseases.
(4) The legislature believes that expanding market opportunities for Washington farmers will preserve and strengthen local food production and increase the already significant contribution that agriculture makes to the state and local economies.
(5) The legislature finds that the state's existing procurement requirements and practices may inhibit the purchase of locally produced food.
(6) The legislature intends that the local farms-healthy kids act strengthen the connections between the state's agricultural industry and the state's food procurement procedures in order to expand local agricultural markets, improve the nutrition of children and other at-risk consumers, and have a positive impact on the environment." [ 2008 c 215 § 1.]
Short title2008 c 215: "This act may be known and cited as the local farms-healthy kids act." [ 2008 c 215 § 12.]
Captions not law2008 c 215: "Captions used in this act are not any part of the law." [ 2008 c 215 § 13.]
Conflict with federal requirements2008 c 215: "If any part of this act is found to be in conflict with federal requirements that are a prescribed condition to the allocation of federal funds to the state, the conflicting part of this act is inoperative solely to the extent of the conflict and with respect to the agencies directly affected, and this finding does not affect the operation of the remainder of this act in its application to the agencies concerned. Rules adopted under this act must meet federal requirements that are a necessary condition to the receipt of federal funds by the state." [ 2008 c 215 § 14.]