The Massachusetts law “prohibits any farm owner or operator from knowingly confining any breeding pig, calf raised for veal, or egg-laying hen in a way that prevents the animal from lying down, standing up, fully extending its limbs, or turning around freely.” (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
New Hampshire Attorney General John Formella is joining a 13-state coalition opposing a new Massachusetts law that bans other states from selling or shipping pork through the Bay State if they do not meet strict hog-housing requirements.
In a statement Wednesday, Formella said: “I am proud to stand with New Hampshire farmers and livestock producers as we fight against this radical and unfair overreach. Massachusetts has no right to impose their policies on our farmers and businesses.”
Formella and 12 other attorneys general allege the new law interferes with interstate commerce and will ultimately impact restaurants, other businesses, and the price of pork for Americans.
Question 3, an animal welfare omnibus called “An Act to Prevent Cruelty to Farm Animals,” was passed by Massachusetts voters in 2016 but has been up in the air awaiting court rulings. Though it won’t be enforced for at least six months, the pork portion of the law just went into effect in August, after the Supreme Court upheld a similar California law requiring pork products sold in the state meet certain guidelines.
The Massachusetts law “prohibits any farm owner or operator from knowingly confining any breeding pig, calf raised for veal, or egg-laying hen in a way that prevents the animal from lying down, standing up, fully extending its limbs, or turning around freely.”
The sale of any pork that doesn’t meet those sow housing requirements is banned in the state, as is transshipment through the state.
Formella alleges the Bay State law violates three clauses of the U.S. Constitution, adding that it “sets a dangerous precedent that would allow states to upend markets across the nation based on their political agendas.”
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