HOUSE BILL 463
54th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2019
Zachary J. Cook and Alonzo Baldonado
RELATING TO AGRICULTURE; ENACTING THE FOOD FREEDOM ACT; PROVIDING FOR THE LIMITED SALE OF UNINSPECTED FOOD ITEMS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. [NEW MATERIAL] SHORT TITLE.--This act may be cited as the "Food Freedom Act".
SECTION 2. [NEW MATERIAL] PURPOSE OF ACT.--The purpose of the Food Freedom Act is to allow for a producer's production and sale of homemade food or drink products for an informed end consumer's home consumption and to encourage the expansion of agricultural sales at farmers' markets, ranches, farms and producers' homes by facilitating the purchase and consumption of fresh and local agricultural products, enhancing the agricultural economy and providing New Mexico residents with unimpeded access to healthy food from known sources.
SECTION 3. [NEW MATERIAL] DEFINITIONS.--As used in the Food Freedom Act:
A. "delivery" means the transfer of a product resulting from a transaction between a producer and an informed end consumer; the delivery may occur by the producer's designated agent at a farm, ranch, farmers' market, home, office or any location agreed to between the producer and the informed end consumer;
B. "farmers' market" means a physical retail market open to the public at which farmers sell produce and other products produced on a farm;
C. "home consumption" means consumed within a private home, or food from a private home that is only consumed by family members, employees or nonpaying guests;
D. "homemade" means food that is prepared or processed in a private home kitchen that is not licensed, inspected or regulated;
E. "informed end consumer" means a person who is the last person to purchase any product, who does not resell the product and who has been informed that the product is not licensed, regulated or inspected;
F. "process" means operations a producer performs in the making or treatment of the producer's food or drink products;
G. "producer" means a person who grows, harvests, prepares or processes food or drink products on the person's owned or leased property; and
H. "transaction" means the exchange of buying and selling.
SECTION 4. [NEW MATERIAL] HOMEMADE FOOD PRODUCTS--RESTRICTIONS ON SALE--COMMERCIAL FOOD ESTABLISHMENTS.--
A. Homemade food products produced, sold and consumed in compliance with the Food Freedom Act shall be exempt from state licensure, permitting, inspection, packaging and labeling requirements.
B. Transactions pursuant to the Food Freedom Act shall:
(1) be directly between the producer and the informed end consumer;
(2) only be for home consumption;
(3) occur only in New Mexico;
(4) not involve interstate commerce;
(5) not involve the sale of meat products, with the following exceptions:
(a) the sale of poultry and poultry products, provided that: 1) the producer slaughters not more than one thousand poultry of the producer's own raising during any one calendar year; 2) the producer does not engage in buying or selling poultry products other than those produced from poultry of the producer's own raising; and 3) the poultry product is not adulterated or misbranded;
(b) the sale of live animals;
(c) the sale of portions of live animals before slaughter for future delivery;
(d) the sale of domestic rabbit meat; and
(e) the sale of farm-raised fish; and
(6) only occur at farmers' markets, farms, ranches, producer's homes or offices or any location the producer and the informed end consumer agree to.
C. Except for raw, unprocessed fruits and vegetables, food shall not be sold or used in any commercial food establishment unless the food has been labeled, licensed, packaged, regulated or inspected as required by law. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the sale of homemade food for home consumption from a retail space located at the ranch, farm or home where the food is produced. A retail space selling homemade food pursuant to this section shall inform the end consumer that the homemade food has not been inspected and shall display a sign indicating that the homemade food has not been inspected. If the retail space is in any way associated with a commercial food establishment or offers for sale any inspected product, the retail space selling homemade food shall comply with rules adopted by the New Mexico department of agriculture that shall require:
(1) that the retail space be physically separated from the commercial food establishment with a separate door and separate cash register or point of sale;
(2) that each separate space shall include signs or other markings clearly indicating which spaces are offering inspected items for sale and which spaces are uninspected;
(3) separation of coolers, freezers and warehouse or other storage areas to prohibit the intermingling of inspected and uninspected products; and
(4) any other requirements specified by the New Mexico department of agriculture to ensure the sale of homemade foods is made to an informed end consumer.
D. The producer shall inform the end consumer that any food product or food sold at a farmers' market or through ranch, farm or home-based sales pursuant to the Food Freedom Act is not certified, labeled, licensed, packaged, regulated or inspected.
E. Nothing in the Food Freedom Act shall be construed to impede the department of health in any investigation of food-borne illness.
F. Nothing in the Food Freedom Act shall be construed to change the requirements for brand inspection or animal health inspections.
G. Nothing in the Food Freedom Act shall preclude an agency from providing assistance, consultation or inspection at the request of the producer.
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