California Governor Gavin Newson just approved a $308 billion state budget, which includes historic investments in supporting the proliferation of plant-based meals at schools across the state. As part of the budget, $100 million will be used to support schools in procuring plant-based foods, as well as sustainably produced foods, California-grown foods, and foods to accommodate the dietary needs of students. An additional $600 million will be invested in upgrading school kitchen infrastructure and in training and compensating food service workers, who will be tasked with preparing new plant-based meals and increasing scratch-cooking—which is an important factor in expanding these types of meals in schools.

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With this development, California is the first state to invest public funds into plant-based school meal programs. California’s new $300 billion budget includes funding for initiatives that will increase plant-based meal options at schools. 

Should more states implement plant-based lunches?