Legislation

The Alliance closely monitors legislation that may impact animal agriculture at the state and federal level. State legislative measures dictating animal care are often lobbied for by activist organizations and have the potential to impact farmers’ and ranchers’ ability to provide safe, nutritious and affordable animal products for all.
AL AK AZ AR CA CO CT DE FL GA HI ID IL IN IA KS KY LA ME MD MA MI MN MS MO MT NE NV NH NJ NM NY NC ND OH OK OR PA RI SC SD TN TX UT VT VA WA WV WI WY DC

States in GREEN have pending legislation.

Click on a state to view past and pending legislation. 

On mobile devices please select the state from the list below to view legislation.

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Federal

Here are current pieces of legislation that should be on your radar:

Mississippi ends ban on labeling of plant-based meat alternatives: Under the new regulations now in effect, a plant-based meat alternative won’t be considered “mislabeled” if it uses an adjective like “meatless,” “plant-based,” or “vegan,” on its labeling.

Foie Gras Banned in New York City: This bill will prohibit retail food establishments or food service establishments from storing, maintaining, selling, or offering to sell force-fed products or food containing a force-fed product.

Michigan Senate delays cage-free ban: A divided Michigan Senate on Thursday passed an update of the state’s animal industry law, including a proposed delay of a requirement that chickens and pigs be given more room in their cages and stalls. 

PACT Act: The President has passed a bill that makes animal cruelty a federal felony.

NPPC and AFBF Challenge California’s Prop 12 in courtAs of 12/6/2019 the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) have filed a legal challenge to California’s Proposition 12.

North American Meat Institute Challenges California’s Prop 12 in court: NAMI filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 12: The Farm Animal Confinement Initiative (Prop 12 or the law). The Meat Institute opposes the law because it will hurt the nation’s food value chain by significantly increasing costs for producers and consumers. As of 11/23/2019, this challenge has been rejected by a California judge. 

Supreme Court Ruling on FOIA UpdateSeveral federal government agencies are updating their FOIA policies to reflect the positive outcome in the FMI v. Argus Leader decision by the Supreme Court. USDA and the Department of Justice have updated their FOIA guidance for Exemption 4, which will protect significantly more information than the previous standards. 

The Alliance monitors legislation that may impact animal agriculture. Here are some trends we’ve seen over the years:

Ballot Initiatives introduced by animal rights organizations to challenge production systems and raise the cost for the farmers and ranchers raising livestock and poultry and ultimately for consumers at the grocery store.

Massachusetts Q3:

The initiative, supported by the Humane Society of the United States, would require MA farms and businesses to produce and sell only eggs from cage-free hens, pork from pigs not raised in or born of a sow raised in conventional housing, and would also apply to veal housing. The ballot passed with 77 percent of the vote on Nov. 8, 2016.
California Prop 2: Also backed by HSUS, this initiative would prohibit with certain exceptions, the confinement on a farm of gestating pigs, veal calves, and egg-laying hens in a manner that prevents the animal to turn around freely, lie down, stand up, and fully extend its limbs. Related, on July 6, 2010, AB 1437, a bill to require out-of-state eggs meet the same requirements imposed on CA producers by Proposition 2, was signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger. Prop 2 and AB 1437 both took effect on the same day: January 1, 2015.
Farm Protection Legislation: Introduced to prevent animal rights extremists from gaining illicit employment on farms with the intent to damage the farms’ reputation. Eight states currently have farm protection laws: Montana, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, North Dakota, Kansas, Alabama and Arkansas. Farm protection laws have been ruled unconstitutional in four states: Wyoming, Idaho, Utah and Iowa.

Antibiotic Legislation:

Under FDA Final Guidance 209, Final Guidance 213 and the Veterinary Feed Directive, all medically important antibiotics used in animal feed or water are only for the therapeutic purposes of disease treatment, disease control or disease prevention and under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian. Some states have introduced bills that would restrict when farmers and veterinarians are allowed to administer antibiotics to food-producing animals. Others would require farmers to submit paperwork regarding their antibiotic usage to the state department of agriculture.

Right to Farm Amendments:

Every state has a Right to Farm law protecting farmers and ranchers who use accepted and standard farming practices from nuisance lawsuits. Several states have introduced amendments that would change the state’s law to prevent new legislation from interfering with farming practices.

Livestock Care Standards Advisory Boards:

States have adopted bills relating to farm animal welfare to establish standards for livestock and poultry care and well-being in the state. So far, Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Ohio, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont and West Virginia have such boards.