DOJ Argues Against High Court Hearing Cage-Free Lawsuit

December 13, 2018

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recommended the Supreme Court reject hearing a challenge to the  Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act, better known as Proposition 2.  The California law requires all eggs sold in the state adhere to Proposition 2 animal welfare standards.  In a setback to the 12 states challenging the law, the DOJ amicus brief argues that the issue should not be taken up by the Supreme Court and instead should be heard by the lower courts. The DOJ also states the Egg Products and Inspection Act is not preempted because it has no standards that address the confinement of the hens.   The briefing also questions if the states can demonstrate standing, arguing their case “depends on speculation about numerous decisions of third-parties in the marketplace.”

Unless the Supreme Court disagrees with the DOJ’s recommendation, the issue will likely be left to egg producers to make their case in district courts.