What follows is the response from Supervisor Keuhl's office after taking
our concerns to Public Health.
The cliff notes version is that they *are not allowing prepackaged food
vendors into the market on the pretense that it promotes lingering and they
do not plan to change that directive.*
I have expressed my disappointment and concern with the relatively vague
responses and lack of actual explanation for how prepackaged food at a CFM
is any different from the exact same food sold at a grocery store.
*Where do we go from here? **I suggest...*
*Refunds for TFF permits*
I've also posed the notion of asking DPH to refund all of these vendors who
have paid for and hold permits that are no longer valid. Personally, I
think this is the most viable next step.
I also encourage our vendors to continue to reach out and appeal. There is
a group of SEE-LA vendors (some that many of us share) that is
organizing as we type. If you have vendors who'd like to be looped in, I
can connect them to that team - just send their emails my way.
*Compilation of DPH Inconsistencies*
In the meantime, I ask that you all *continue to email me accounts of DPH
inconsistencies *you have experienced currently and even preceding this
current health crisis (I realize that's a novel/can of worms for many of
us). The bullet below that responds to our claims of inconsistency
(education then action) is not sitting well with me. I feel lucky at
Hollywood, as this has been my personal experience, but our five other
markets have not shared the same response.
I hope all of your markets are going well under these new(est) directives
and that you're finding pockets of joy, calm and connection.
Hi Maegen and Jim,
I was able to receive some responses from the Department of Public Health
following our call. DPH will not be moving forward with allowing
non-produce pre-packaged foods.
- *There is confusion as to why LA County is the only county that does
not allow “community event” designation pre-packaged products to continue
to be made available at CFMs.*
- Vendors with a Certified Farmers Market permit can sell pre-packed
products, typically pre-cut fresh produce put into packages.
Vendors with a
Community Events permit have been prohibited via the Health
and are typically the vendors selling non-produce pre-packaged foods.
- County Counsel has ruled to temporarily prohibit all community event
permits in an attempt to prevent gatherings of people. There
has been push
back from operators and County Counsel and DPH believe this
ruling is in
the best interest of slowing the transmission of the virus by
gatherings/crowds at the markets.
- *Concerns over inconsistency by inspectors visiting markets. Some have
asked for immediate closure of full pre-packaged products immediately vs.
the following week.*
- Public Health’s Environmental Health division approaches all
inspections with an education approach first and if there is
upon follow-up inspection, then enforcement steps are initiated.
- We have elevated this operator’s concerns about inconsistency to
our Environmental Health Program.
- *Lack of guidance/more structure on how to social distance/create
systems within CFMs*.
- We’ve updated our guidance for farmers’ markets as of yesterday
- These are the critical social distancing requirements:
- Market managers are responsible for monitoring capacity to ensure
customer social distancing.
- Allow for space between produce stands
- Recommend designating an employee that will ensure the social
distancing requirements are met for those waiting to enter the CFM,
purchasing from a market vendor and within the market.
- Recommend using tape on the ground surface to keep customers
adequately spaced within the market.
- *Can Public Health do a telebriefing to be conducted specific to
- Thank you for this idea; we passed it along to our Environmental
We will keep you updated if there are updates to the online guidance or if
there will be telebriefings specific to farmer’s markets.
All the best,
*Fernando R. Morales*
District Director, West/Metro LA
*Sign Up for Kuehl Happenings <http://supervisorkuehl.com/email/>*
*Commendation Requests <http://supervisorkuehl.com/commendations>*
*Safer At Home Message
Market Manager, The Hollywood Farmers' Market
SEE-LA | *Increasing Food Access for ALL Angelenos*
*Direct (Office), M-TH:* 323.373.3339 <(323)%20373-3339>
*Direct (Emergency), Sundays 6a-3p: *323.463.3171,* press 0 *
*IG: *@thehfm @seelaorg