Urgent call for congressional intervention - Addressing California prop. 12

May 22, 2024

By Farms.com

The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and the American Farm Bureau Federation mobilized over 900 agricultural stakeholders to advocate for a federal legislative solution to California's Proposition 12. Addressing U.S. House Agriculture Committee leaders, the coalition articulated the adverse effects of Prop. 12 and the critical need for congressional intervention.

Outlined in the coalition's letter were several pivotal points:

Marketplace Disruption: U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack's caution of potential market chaos underscores the necessity for congressional clarity and certainty for farmers.

State Law Variances: Producers face the daunting prospect of navigating disparate state laws, imposing substantial compliance costs and fostering industry consolidation, particularly impacting smaller operations.

Global Trade Risks: Prop. 12 compliances could undermine U.S. trade negotiations and expose domestic products to retaliatory measures from international partners.

Producer Dilemma: Pork producers are compelled to comply with California's regulations, limiting their market options and jeopardizing their economic viability.

Preservation of Farming Freedom: While safeguarding producers' autonomy, the House Farm Bill recognizes states' authority to enact commerce-affecting laws within their jurisdictions.

Endorsed by stakeholders from over 40 states and prominent national organizations, including the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and National Milk Producers Federation, the coalition's letter emphasizes the bipartisan imperative for congressional action. Both the U.S. Supreme Court and Secretary Vilsack affirm that only Congress can mitigate market disruptions and provide farmers with the requisite certainty.

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