Help us represent Oakland at Terra Madre!

Let’s send Esperanza to Italy!


Dear friends, neighbors, and allies:

We are calling on you to help us meet a crucial goal. It’s a modest one, with global impact. We are fundraising to send our beloved Council Director, Esperanza Pallana, to represent Oakland at the Slow Food International Conference next month. All she needs is a plane ticket to help bring Oakland to the table. At nearly half of our goal, we have raised enough money to get her to Italy and we need you to help us get her return ticket!

Esperanza is the beating heart of the Oakland Food Policy Council, and her leadership has resulted in some huge wins for food justice in Oakland. Two weeks ago marked a significant milestone for us; after four years of campaigning we finally got the Oakland Planning Commission to propose zoning changes to allow Oaklanders to grow food ‘by right’ and remove several costly barriers to urban agriculture. In addition to strategic organizing, Esperanza has helped form the culture and ethos of the Council, always keeping us true to our roots.

The Slow Food Conference is about the deep roots of food heritage, as well as the far-reaching growth of food movements. As a member of the Oakland Delegation, Esperanza will share our experiences in working for food justice, and learn about how producers around the world have overcome barriers to self-determine their food futures.

We only have 11 days left to meet our goal!

Please support Esperanza by contributing to our Indiegogo campaign. Esperanza is offering some inspired food rewards, and all contributions are tax deductible. Click here to send Esperanza to Italy!

Rethinking Systems Change


Join OFPC and People’s Grocery for a discussion on system change.

When: Saturday, September 27th 2014, 10AM-12PM

Where: Eastside Arts Alliance, 2277 International Blvd, Oakland

RSVP to epallana at oaklandfood dot org



Oakland Planning Commission Says “Yes!”


Kelly Carlisle of Acta Non Verba Youth Urban Farm

In a remarkable show of support, the Oakland Planning Commission voted “Yes!” to the basic right to grow food. The Commission went above and beyond a significant liberalizing of code by Planning Staff to enable to growing, harvesting and selling of food ‘by right.’ They further voted to remove restrictions in commercial and transit zones. The proposal moved forward to City Council will enable 1) the right to grow food for personal consumption in nearly all zones without permits (we are still working on parks in support of the Edible Parks Program) 2) enable “Limited Urban Agriculture” which includes sales without special permitting (you still need a business tax license…death and taxes, my friend, death and taxes) in most zones in Oakland. Click the following links to read the proposed changes:

However, the proposal moved forward now includes the Commercial Business District Zones and Transit Oriented Zones.

The Oakland Food Policy Council recognizes and celebrates the leadership it took from all stakeholders and decision makers to move this forward. It has been four years of working with community members and City Council members who have remained dedicated.

We cannot say enough about the individuals that have shown up to Planning Department meetings, Planning Commission meetings, City Council meetings, community meetings… they have stayed late into the evening to make sure their voices were heard. And you know what? They have been. None of this would happen without the continued effort of community to work with OFPC. Community serves as members on our council; They advocate to support our recommendations. Most importantly, they demonstrate the power of self determination.

I personally feel lucky, inspired and deeply motivated to be a part of this extraordinary community. It continues to be a blessing to work alongside you all.

-Esperanza Pallana, Council Director