New Mexico universal free meals bill heads to governor's desk

The state would join California, Maine and Colorado in offering universal free meals at school.
Students carrying lunch trays
New Mexico lawmakers have passed SB 4 which will provide universal free meals to students at school. / Photo: Shutterstock

New Mexico is poised to become the latest state to begin offering universal free meals to students. 

Lawmakers in New Mexico have passed SB 4 which would provide free school breakfast and lunch daily to all students starting next school year. The bill also aims to cut food waste by requiring schools to implement share tables and allow students to have at least 20 minutes of seated lunch time. 

In addition, SB 4 includes a grant program available to schools who purchase locally grown or processed foods for use in school meals.

The bill now heads to Governor Michelle Grisham’s desk where she is expected to sign it. 

New Mexico will join California, Maine and Colorado in offering universal free meals. 

After the expiration of the U.S. Department of Agriculture pandemic-era waivers that allowed schools across the country to serve meals to all students for free, lawmakers in many states introduced legislation that would provide free school meals to all students.

See which states currently offer, or are considering, universal free meals via the map below:



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