Legislature: Bipartisan Farm-To-Table Bill Passes Unanimously


House Bill 33, a measure that would create in-state meat inspection in New Mexico unanimously passed the House of Representatives. The bipartisan legislation sponsored by Representatives Rebecca Dow (R-TorC), Gail Armstrong (R-Magdalena), Moe Maestas (D-Albuquerque), and Andres Romero (D-Albuquerque) is an effort to establish in-state meat inspections in New Mexico. Currently, New Mexico meat producers send 99% of their products out of state to be processed. HB 33 is part of a farm to table package of bills, including HB 121 sponsored by Rep. Jack Chatfield (R-Mosquero), that would localize meat inspections and consumption.

“Our farms and ranches across New Mexico produce great products. HB 33 is a step towards growing our local economy and delivering New Mexico homegrown meats to New Mexico consumers,” said Rep. Rebecca Dow (TorC). “New Mexicans want to buy local food, including meat. In state meat inspections will allow ranchers to sell properly inspected meat, locally. Our farms and ranches will now have a larger localized economy.”

Rep’s Dow and Chatfield recently published a video on this effort for farm-to-table that can be viewed here.

The COVID crisis revealed the lack of in-state meat inspectors and packaging operation in New Mexico. With the food shortages that followed the economic shutdowns across the country, New Mexico grocery stores and local families were left with complicated and expensive options to access meat and protein.

HB 33 passed the House unanimously. HB 121, the meat packaging bill, is awaiting action.