July 29, 2021

NPPC calls for delay for California Prop 12 implementation

NPPC calls for delay for California Prop 12 implementation 

The United States Supreme Court announced it will not hear the North American Meat Institute’s (NAMI) case against Proposition 12 (Prop 12) in California. The case was denied without explanation. Prop 12 will become law in 2022, but numerous organizations have called for a delay. For background information on Prop 12, check out this Taking Stock D.C. article. NAMI was joined by 20 states in the lawsuit.

“We are disappointed our petition for cert was denied,” said Sarah Little, Vice President of communications for NAMI. “We will be considering other options to block Proposition 12, which will cost both producers and consumers millions of dollars according to economists and the state of California’s own analysis.” As mentioned by Little, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) released a detailed document of what the agency believes to be the financial impact of Prop 12, acknowledging that California producers of shell eggs, liquid eggs, whole veal meat, and whole pork meat will find it more costly to compete with out-of-state farms that aren't required to follow similar rules for animal confinement.

After the denial by the Supreme Court, the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) sent a letter to CDFA requesting a delay of implication. NPPC states that farmers will need more than 28 months to adjust to the rules of Prop 12 (the law originally passed in September 2019). The letter cites a reference from the California Legislative Analyst’s noting that “it could take several years for enough farmers in California and other states to change their housing systems to meet the measure’s requirements.” NPPC argues the start date should be delayed 2 years, beginning January 1, 2024. 

A public hearing on the matter was requested by NPPC, along with a stakeholder workshop to better understand the real-life effects Prop 12 will have. Finally, NPPC asked for a clear guide for hog farmers so they can better understand the changes they will need to make to comply with Prop 12. Even with these changes, NPPC still states that the effects of Prop 12 will be detrimental for farmers and Californians. 

“If you include the Hispanic, African American, the Asian, and Pacific Islander communities, together we make up a majority of the population in the state of California,” said Lon Hatamiya, President and CEO of The Hatamiya Group. “Pork is one of the primary protein sources for those communities. And the greatest financial burden falls upon many of these communities that potentially are going to be very negatively impacted.” 

Read NPPC’s letter here.