Meals and meals security have been on the dockets of many state legislatures in 2021

Editor’s Be aware:   The next article was first revealed this previous Wednesday by the Nationwide Environmental Well being Affiliation (NEHA) beneath the headline: “2021 State Enacted Laws: Meals June 2021.”  The writer is Doug Farquhar, JD, who’s NEHA’s new director of its Authorities Affairs division.

Till late 2020, Farquhar was the long-time director of the Environmental Well being Program on the Nationwide Convention of State Legislatures.  At NCSL, Farquhar helped developed instruments that improved the non-partisan coverage store’s potential to trace state legislative actions in real-time.   

He was beneficiant in sharing that work with Meals Security News when he was at NCLS and we’re happy to report he continues to be useful to us at NEHA.

Only a phrase on the timing. Most state legislatures have adjourned for the yr.  There are a handful of exceptions. California and Pennsylvania go year-round. And an occasional particular session, often on price range points, stays doable in different states.

However with state legislature largely shut down for the yr, Doug Farquhar’s newest evaluation of what the “Laboratories of Democracy” did when it got here to meals and meals security, couldn’t be extra well timed.

By Doug Farquhar, JD

State legislatures launched a number of hundred payments associated to meals throughout the 2021 legislative periods. Virtually each state launched laws concerning meals—together with meals supply, hashish, COVID-19, and meals freedom —a nd state legislatures heard about proposed coverage adjustments to meals legal guidelines.

NEHA tracked 382 payments in 36 states with 58 payments being enacted in 25 states. A number of states stay in session and extra payments may very well be enacted earlier than the top of the session (aka sine die). A majority of the states, nevertheless, have ended their periods for 2021.

The primary points NEHA tracked have been hashish in meals, COVID-19 and meals, cottage meals and meals freedom, meals deserts, meals supply, meats, micro-markets, uncooked milk, and the Supplemental Vitamin Help Program (SNAP).

Hashish in Meals
Three payments have been enacted on hashish in meals in 2021. Kentucky HB 325 (2021) establishes labeling necessities for cannabidiol merchandise.

Nevada enacted SB 114 (2021) that authorizes meals that incorporates hemp to be bought or produced at sure meals institutions beneath sure circumstances. The legislation requires the Nevada Division of Well being and Human Companies to undertake rules associated to meals that incorporates hemp and prohibits meals from being deemed as adulterated solely as a result of such meals incorporates hemp.

In Virginia, HB 1430 and SB 918 (2021) create the Industrial Hemp Fund that declares industrial hemp extract as meals and topics it to statutory necessities. These payments additionally set up requirements for the manufacturing of business hemp extract and industrial hemp is permitted as a meals additive.

COVID-19 and Meals
4 payments in three states handle COVID-19 and meals: New Jersey AB 3865 and SB 2347, Ohio SB 108, and Wyoming, HB 51.

New Jersey AB 3865 (2021) bars grocery shops from accepting returns throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and for 30 days after a state of emergency. Grocery shops can settle for returns on account of producer defects however can not resell them. SB 2347 (2021) would enable small companies to defer the fee and remittance of employment and business-related taxes.

Ohio SB 108 (2021) will present $125 million in grants to bars, eating places, and the lodging business to get better from the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Wyoming, HB 51 (2021) expands and enhances meat processing by making a grant program to amenities struggling throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cottage Meals and Meals Freedom
Eight states — Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming — enacted 12 payments of laws concerning Cottage Meals or Meals Freedom.

Alabama enacted SB 160 (2021), Cottage Meals Manufacturing Operations, that amends the present cottage meals legislation to permit for on-line gross sales of unregulated meals merchandise, removes the gross receipt gross sales cap, and requires dietary info on meals labels.

Arkansas SB 248 replaces its cottage meals legislation with the Meals Freedom Act that exempts sure producers of selfmade meals or drinks merchandise from any state meals security licensure, certification, or inspection. Arkansas HB 1118 (2021) permits the sale of cottage meals over the web.

Indiana SB 185 (2021) requires that the state Division of Well being, State Board of Animal Well being, and state Division of Agriculture shall, in session with business teams and meals security consultants, submit suggestions regarding home-based distributors to the final meeting.

Montana enacted the Montana Native Meals Alternative Act (SB 199, Sess. 2021) that exempts selfmade meals producers from licensing, allowing, certification, packaging, labeling, and inspection rules, in addition to different requirements and necessities.

The New Mexico legislature enacted the Do-it-yourself Meals Act (HB 177, Sess. 2021), exempting non-potentially hazardous selfmade meals objects from regulation pursuant to the meals service sanitation act or the state meals act. The legislation additionally preempts native guidelines on meals security necessities, together with the Albuquerque meals security ordinance.

Oklahoma’s HB 1032 (2021) exempts selfmade meals merchandise (i.e., meals that’s produced and packaged at a house residence) from licensing and all different necessities of the state Division of Well being or the state Division of Agriculture, Meals, and Forestry.

The Oklahoma legislature additionally enacted HB 1772 (2021) that gives exemptions from the meals institution license required by the commissioner of well being for a number of retail meals producers together with produce stands; kitchens in a personal dwelling that put together meals on the market at a nonprofit civic, charitable, or non secular group bake sale; a personal dwelling that receives catered or home-delivered meals; a kitchen in a personal dwelling or in a mattress and breakfast that prepares and affords meals to company; daycare facilities or household daycare facilities; nursing amenities and specialised amenities; and residential care properties, grownup daycare facilities, assisted-living facilities, and continuum of care amenities.

Texas HB 1276 (2021) permits specified meals institutions to promote on to the patron. SB 617 (2021) clarifies earlier laws to permit meals producers to promote on to shoppers at farmer’s markets.

Utah turned the second state after California to undertake laws that permits for microenterprise dwelling kitchen operations. HB 94 (2021) permits dwelling cooks to arrange meals from their properties and promote to shoppers with out being a licensed kitchen.

In Wyoming, the legislature prolonged its already expansive meals freedom legislation to incorporate the sale of eggs and permit the sale of selfmade meals (HB 118, Sess. 2021).

Meals Deserts
Meals deserts are being acknowledged in legislatures. The legislatures in Maryland, New York, and Utah all enacted laws concerning meals deserts or meals insecurity.

In Maryland, the legislature established the Maryland Meals System Resiliency Council to deal with the meals insecurity disaster because of the COVID-19 pandemic; develop suggestions to extend the long-term resiliency of the meals system; and develop by November 1, 2021, a plan to extend the manufacturing and procurement of Maryland licensed meals (HB 831, SB 723; Sess. 2021).

The New York legislature is directing the Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets to supply a report on the state’s farm and meals provide concerning methods to enhance resiliency in meals provide chain logistics to deal with meals shortages, meals wastes, and the shortcoming to get state-grown meals items to market because of the COVID-19 pandemic (AB 952, SB 1305; Sess. 2021).

New York AB 963 and SB 901 (2021) enable supermarkets to offer extra edible meals to meals aid organizations. NY AB 1262 and SB 878 (2021) relate to working with the U.S. Division of Agriculture to develop an internet recent meals buying possibility all through the state.

Utah SB 141(2021) creates the Process Drive on Meals Safety to make sure the general public has entry to enough, inexpensive, protected, and nutritious meals that meets meals preferences and dietary wants.

Meals Supply
Third-party meals supply was a brand new situation for state legislatures in 2021.

Arkansas enacted HB 1426 (2021) that establishes the Arkansas Truthful Meals Supply Act. Meals supply should have an settlement with a meals facility to take meals orders and ship meals orders ready by the meals facility to prospects

Colorado SB 21-035 (2021) prohibits a third-party meals supply service from providing or taking and arranging for the sale or the same-day supply or same-day pickup of ready meals or drinks from a retail meals institution with no written settlement with the retail meals institution’s consent.

The Texas legislature additionally addressed meals supply in SB 911 (2021) by specifying necessities of third-party supply providers that ship meals from eating places.

Meat
Insurance policies on meat have been enacted in seven states. In contrast to in latest periods, nevertheless, the difficulty of cell-based meat (or imitation or synthetic meats) was not in style. Payments associated to the sale of meat straight from the producer to the patron have been in style, with payments in Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming changing into legislation.

Arkansas HB 1315 (2021) transfers the authority of meat inspections over to the state Division of Agriculture.

Colorado SB 21-079 (2021) deregulates direct to shopper meat gross sales and permits an individual to promote, with out licensure, sure animals or animal shares to knowledgeable finish shoppers with out regulation or inspection by any public well being company. The scant position for the state, just about restricted to the State Board of Inventory Inspection, doesn’t imply the wanted share agreements won’t take time and experience. Cattle, calves, sheep, elk, bison, goats, hogs, and rabbits are among the many animals for which shares may be bought beneath the brand new legislation. The knowledgeable finish shopper (i.e., the final particular person to buy meat by the share with out being concerned within the resell of the product) shouldn’t be regulated or inspected.

Maine’s LD 66 prohibits the sale of horsemeat. The legislation limits the sale of horsemeat to “cattle, sheep, swine, goats, or an unique species outlined by the federal act, not deer, rabbits, or equines” (HB 66, Sess. 2021). LD 77 authorizes the Maine Division of Marine Sources to cost an utility price for coming into a lottery for a scallop license (HB 77, Sess. 2021).

In Montana, HB 336 supplies for commerce between states for state-inspected meat, offered that inspections should not less than equal federal legal guidelines and rules.

Nebraska amended its Meat and Poultry Inspection legislation. LB 324 (2021) would enable the acquisition of meat by means of an animal share contract—an possession curiosity in an animal or herd of animals created by a written contract between a shopper and a farmer or rancher. The meat bought should be inspected by the U.S. Division of Agriculture. The legislation would enable, nevertheless, a producer to promote packages of meat to shoppers beneath a customized exemption in federal legislation.

Virginia HB 1353 and SB 791 (2021) replace present code references to the Federal Meat Inspection Act and the federal Poultry Merchandise Inspection Act. HB 1448 (2021) requires the state Marine Sources Fee to undertake rules essential to handle Atlantic menhaden, together with these essential to adjust to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Fee Interstate Fishery Administration Plan for Atlantic Menhaden.

The Wyoming legislature enacted HB 54 (2021) that amends the duties of the enterprise council to require assist for Wyoming producers within the agriculture and meat processing business, expands permissible loans and grants to Wyoming meat producers and processors, and limits state rulemaking authority associated to meat processing. The invoice prohibits the Division of Agriculture or the Environmental Council from imposing requirements or necessities associated to meat processing extra stringent than federal legislation.

Micro Markets
One state enacted laws on micro markets. Indiana SB 20 (2021) regulates micro-market meals gross sales; supplies that an proprietor or operator of a micro-market shall not be required to 1) submit any documentation or 2) be topic to any preplan assessment, inspection course of, or approval course of by the state division, company, or native well being division earlier than the set up of a micro-market; and supplies that an proprietor or operator of a micro-market should notify the company or native well being division the place the micro-market is situated no later than 10 enterprise days after the set up of the micro-market.

Complement Vitamin Help Program (SNAP)
Two states enacted laws referring to SNAP: Maryland’s SB 913 (2021) and New Jersey’s AB 4240 (2021).

Maryland SB 913 (2021) establishes the Warmth and Eat Program inside SNAP within the Division of Human Companies for the aim of increasing meals entry to households which might be receiving or are eligible for SNAP program advantages.

New Jersey’s AB 4240 (2021) supplies for technological upgrades of the appliance course of for SNAP.

Miscellaneous Meals Security Payments
New Hampshire HB 345 (2021) establishes a license for mushroom harvesters.

Vermont HB 218 (2021) pertains to the sale of uncooked milk and permits for the direct sale of unpasteurized milk from the producer to the patron for private consumption. Farmstand gross sales of uncooked milk are permitted; nevertheless, the producer should inform the state of the place gross sales happen.

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