On July 28, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a 24-page opinion which said National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) lost on seeking to overturn California’s Proposition 12. Prop 12 is a state law that requires any pork sold in California to be raised based on that state’s arbitrary housing requirements. So, come Jan. 1, 2022, any U.S. hog farmer with sow herds will have needed to invest potentially millions to upgrade facilities to meet California’s arbitrary requirements.
Today an average barn might cost $1,600 to $2,500 per sow; Under California’s animal-confinement rules, compliant barns are “averaging as much as $3,400 per sow,” says Rabobank analyst Christine McCracken.
The two farm organizations said that Proposition 12 violated the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause. But the Ninth Circuit said the two farm groups did not plausibly plead that Proposition 12 violated the dormant commerce clause because the California standards did not “…impermissibly regulate extraterritorial conduct outside of California’s borders.”
The Court further said “…the interconnected nature of the pork industry does not mean that Proposition 12’s extraterritorial impact violates the underlying principles of the dormant Commerce Clause.”
Added cost does not matter
It is clear the panel read the