A trade association representing meatpackers is asking the highest court in the land to consider a new report in their fight to overturn California’s Proposition 12, arguing the law does not benefit consumers and, increases breeding sow mortality, according to the state’s own rule.

In a reply brief to opposition to its petition asking the high court to hear the case, the North American Meat Institute referred to the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s analysis of Prop 12 released late last month. On May 28, CDFA kicked off a 45-day comment period on the proposed regulations to implement the law, which it says “mandates farm animal confinement standards for egg-laying hens, veal calves, and breeding pigs and the sale of shell eggs, liquid eggs, whole veal meat, and whole pork meat derived from these covered animals.” Ag groups have pushed back against the law and raised concerns over its impact on interstate commerce.

“Our petition to challenge the law has the support of more than 20 states and we think it should be reviewed by the Supreme Court,” Julie Anna Potts, president and CEO of the North American Meat Institute, said in a statement.

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NAMI’s brief said CDFA reported the “estimated ongoing cost is greater than the initial cost of conversion at $100,0000 per year for a typical breeding pig farm.” The state also said the animal confinement allowances specifically outlined in Prop 12 “are not based in specific peer-reviewed published scientific literature or accepted as standards within the scientific community.”

The proposition passed by a 63%-37% margin in 2018. Proponents included the Humane Society of the United States, with ag groups like NAMI and the National Pork Producers Council standing in opposition.

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