Entrepreneurship & Food Jobs


  • Emi Reyes, Latino Economic Development Center
  • Ronnie Webb, the Green Scheme
  • Caroline Howe, Department of Small & Local Business Development

2022 Projects:

  1. Share resources and recommend streamlining licensing regulations for small food businesses.
  2. Support entrepreneurs moving to brick and mortar through resource sharing, policy recommendations, and leveraging District funds towards ownership.
  3. Create database and map of legacy food businesses in the District and identify strategies to support these businesses. (Joint project with Food Access & Equity WG)
  4. Convene farmers markets and recommend policies to extend operations and expand to more locations, particularly in Wards 5, 7, and 8. (Join project with Sustainable Supply Chain)

Work Products:

Farmers Market Resources: Including guidance on how to start a farmers market

Make Food Work: A Strategy to Strengthen the DC Food Workforce (January 2020) creates a road map for improving job quality and expanding career pathways within the District’s food workforce. Created with support from Kaiser Permanente, the report is a collaborative effort of the DC Food Policy Council, DC Office of Planning, Workforce Investment Council (WIC) and Department of Employment Services (DOES) with input from workforce training providers, businesses, and community organizations.

Food Economy Study (September 2019)  — The Food Economy Study is an analysis of the economic, employment, and fiscal impact of the District’s local food economy. The study examines various sectors of the local food economy including food production, grocery stores, restaurants and bars, and wholesaling and distribution and then provides recommendations to support and grow the local food economy. View the one pager on the Food Economy Study here.

Other Resources:

Funding for Nonprofits and Small Food Businesses

DC Health Cottage Food regulations: DC Health released the final cottage food regulations in September 2017, which include a list of what non-hazardous foods can be prepared by cottage food producers and where sales can take place. The Cottage Food Expansion Act has passed first reading with DC Council. See this FPC Fact Sheet (2017) on DC cottage food regulations.