The Supreme Court has denied a petition to review California’s Proposition 12, which prohibits the sale of meat products that do not conform with the state’s animal housing standards.
The denial of the petition for a write of certiorari was among dozens announced Monday morning by the court and came without any explanation.
"We are disappointed our petition for cert was denied. We will be considering other options to protect consumers and producers from Proposition 12, which will cost both millions of dollars, according to economists and the state of California’s own analysis,” NAMI spokesperson Sarah Little said in a statement.
The North American Meat Institute filed the petition, which had the support of 20 states. Among the opponents were the Humane Society of the U.S., Health Care Without Harm, The National Council for Occupational Safety and Health, The Consumer Federation of America, and Food & Water Watch.
NAMI was challenging the sales ban in California on veal and pork not raised according to housing standards specified in Prop 12, which California voters approved in 2018.
In its most recent brief filed in the high court, NAMI said the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision “conflicts with decisions of other circuits and this court concerning the limits the Constitution imposes on a state’s ability to adopt trade barriers designed to control production conditions in other states and countries.”
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The Ninth Circuit’s Oct. 15 decision said the district court “did not abuse its discretion in concluding that Proposition 12 does not have a discriminatory purpose given the lack of evidence that the state had a protectionist intent.”
Nor did the district court abuse its discretion by relying on a previous 9th Circuit ruling “to hold that Proposition 12 does not have a discriminatory effect because it treats in-state meat producers the same as out-of-state meat producers,” the court said.
Prop 12 is also the subject of separate litigation from the National Pork Producers Council and the American Farm Bureau Federation. The Ninth Circuit heard oral arguments on that case in April and has not yet rendered a decision.
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