Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian, D-Van Nuys, announced proposed legislation Wednesday that he said would provide incentives for public schools across the state to offer students a plant-based entree and plant-based milk at meals.
Under AB 479, the Healthy Climate-Friendly School Lunch Act, schools would receive additional state funding for serving the vegan options, which Nazarian said would be healthier and more climate-friendly.
The bill would also provide state support for staff training, engagement, recipe development, and other technical assistance needed to help boost participation rates, according to Nazarian's office.
Local news from across Southern California
"This is going to be one option that looks at not only making us more healthy as Californians, not only helping us meet our climate goals, but also allowing us to save money in the long run," Nazarian said.
Nazarian announced the bill at a news conference outside Los Angeles City Hall, alongside City Councilman Paul Koretz and members of organizations backing the idea.
"We've received a lot of positive feedback, which doesn't surprise me, considering the last few years there has been a 600 percent increase in people who identify as vegan," Koretz said.
The bill is backed by Animal Hope in Legislation, Friends of the Earth, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and Social Compassion in Legislation, according to Nazarian's office.