Dems Divided as Supreme Court Hears Prop. 12 Case

Oct. 11, 2022
The Biden administration is drawing criticism for weighing in on the side of the meatpackers.

The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments Oct. 11 in a lawsuit brought to block the implementation of Proposition 12, a California law that sets minimum standards for the confinement of hogs raised for pork. It applies to all pork sold in the state, from any source, within or outside California.

The measure was passed with overwhelming voter support in 2018, but industry groups including the National Pork Producers Council sued to block implementation. They argue that its application to pork raised outside California make it an impermissible intrusion on interstate commerce.

Democrats are divided over the measure. The Biden administration has surprised some observers by taking the side of the meat processors in an amicus brief. On the other hand, both of California’s U.S. senators, as well as 14 senators from other states, signed a letter in June asking the government to support Prop. 12. One of these, Cory Booker (D-N.J.), issued a statement directly criticizing the administration: “I am deeply disappointed and angered that USDA and the Biden administration have aligned themselves with corporate meatpackers and their cruel factory farm system that is dangerous for workers, consumers, animals, and the environment.”

About the Author

Pan Demetrakakes | Senior Editor

Pan has written about the food and beverage industry for more than 25 years. His areas of coverage have included formulations, processing, packaging, marketing and retailing. Pan worked for Food Processing Magazine for six years in the 1990s, where he was operations editor (his current role), touring dozens of food plants of every description. He has also worked for Packaging and Food & Beverage Packaging magazines, the latter as chief editor, during which he won three ASBPE awards. He is a graduate of Stanford University with a BA in communications.

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