Food Law

Food Law - The Summer 2024 course description can be found at the bottom of this page.

Food Law - Professors Pamela Frasch & George Kimbrell

  • Course Number: LAW-415
  • Course Type: Foundational
  • Credits: 2
  • Enrollment Limit: Determined by the Registrar
  • Description:  Food is something we all need to survive, and understanding the complex legal structure regulating food is important for anyone concerned or interested in where food comes from, how it’s produced, how it’s processed, and how it’s sold or served. This survey course provides an examination of modern food law and policy in the American judicial, legislative, and regulatory arenas. It introduces students to both the history of food regulation and explores selected 21st century food issues from farm to fork, such as food safety and food product labeling, as well as food production issues like industrial agriculture, factory farming, and food technologies. Throughout, the course will discuss the broader social, economic, and environmental context of our food system and its often-hidden legal drivers.

  • Prerequisite: none, although it is highly recommended for students interested in taking the more specialized food law courses offered at the law school.
  • Evaluation Method: Two short papers; two class presentations; class participation
  • Capstone: no
  • WIE: yes


Food Law - Professors Pamela Frasch & Hira Jaleel    (Summer 2023, 2024)

  • Course Number: Law-415
  • Course Type:  Foundational
  • Credits:  3
  • Enrollment Limit:  Enrollment determined by the Registrar.
  • JD students must obtain permission from Director Raj Reddy to register.                           

Employing the Canvas learning platform, this online course is delivered through an asynchronous online format. Featuring modules that open and close each week, this course affords students added flexibility when engaging with recorded lectures, readings, assignments, and one another and the course professor via discussion boards. Students will receive an email from the Animal Law Program Coordinator instructing them how to access the Canvas platform, which includes a Canvas orientation, and their course a few days before the course opens. Students who have not received instructions on how to access their Canvas platform 48 hours before the first day of class or those who register for the class within 48 hours of the first day of class should contact the Animal Law Program Coordinator, Danielle Lopez, at to request access. To learn more about the course and evaluation method, review the description below.

Description:  Food is something we all need to survive, but our relationship with food can be deeply personal. Politics, culture, family tradition, and religious beliefs can all impact how we interact with food every day, and can deeply affect the decisions we make on purchasing, preparing, and consuming food. However, food, especially when sourced from animal agriculture, has implications for animal welfare, public health and the environment. Understanding the policies and legal structure regulating food, therefore, is important for anyone interested in where food comes from, how it’s produced, how it’s processed, and how it’s sold or served. This survey course provides an examination of contemporary food law and policy and introduces students to a number of issues and concepts, such as the history of food laws in the US, food safety, labeling, animal farming practices, safeguarding farmed animals against diseases, food innovation in the alternative protein space, comparative international issues, and some of the broader contextual and policy challenges that warrant investigation. Food law is evolving rapidly, and although this course will introduce you to current laws and regulations, perhaps the more important conversations we will have will ask what the laws and regulations should be.

  • Evaluation Method: Participation Via Discussion Posts, Quizzes, Assignments, Final Exam
  • Capstone: no
  • WIE: no