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Physical and Operational Standards for Urban Agriculture Projects
If you are growing food to share with or sell to others, you will be operating under either the Neighborhood Agriculture permit or the Large Scale Urban Agriculture Permit. Neighborhood Agriculture Permits are considerably easier, and less expensive, to obtain. In some cases Neighborhood Agriculture permitted gardens are allowed without specific permitting needs. See these pages for information about when you need a permit and when you don't.
All Neighborhood Agriculture gardens and farms, regardless of location and size, are required to follow the following physical and operational standards:
• Compost areas must be set back at least 3 feet from dwelling units and decks.
• If the farmed area is enclosed by fencing, the fencing must be: (A) wood fencing, (B) ornamental fencing as defined by Planning Code Section 102.32, or (C) chain-link or woven wire fencing if over half of the fence area that borders a public right-of-way will be covered by plant material or other vegetative screening within three (3) years of the fence installation.
• Use of mechanized farm equipment is generally prohibited in residential districts except for during the initial preparation of the land when heavy equipment may be used to prepare the land for agriculture use. Landscaping equipment designed for household use shall be permitted.
• Farm equipment shall be enclosed or otherwise screened from sight.
• Sale of food and/or horticultural products from the use may occur between the hours of 6 a.m. and 8 p.m.
• In all districts, sales, pick-ups, and donations of fresh food and horticultural products grown on-site are permitted. In every district except "Residential Districts" value-added products, where the primary ingredients are grown and produced on-site, are permitted.
Photo: Jill Clardy
San Francisco is habitat for 800,000 people – meeting needs for space to work, play, and learn; for food, water, and air; for community with local flora and fauna. SF Environment provides support for urban agriculture and forestry and green buildings, helping residents and businesses harness environmental opportunities.