Barring a last-minute judicial intervention, pork sales in Massachusetts are about to change.
Nearly seven years after voters approved a new framework for the treatment of livestock, a prohibition on the sale of pork from pigs housed in too-cramped conditions — even those raised and slaughtered in other states — is set to take effect in less than three weeks.
A federal judge Monday approved a compromise joint motion between state regulators and industry groups, who had challenged the voter-approved law, that allows enforcement of most pork-related regulations to begin Aug. 24.
Products that pass through Massachusetts on their way to final sale destinations in other states, however, will not immediately be subject to the new requirements.
As part of the deal, Attorney General Andrea Campbell’s office and the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources will not enforce any new restrictions on “transshipped” pork meat for at least six months. In that span, MDAR will explore a potential regulatory carveout explicitly exempting products that traverse the Bay State but are neither produced nor sold here.
Voters in 2016 approved a ballot question banning the sale of eggs, veal and pork from animals held in conditions deemed cruel. The egg and veal regulations already took effect, but the pork portion remained in limbo amid multiple legal battles.
The National Pork Producers Council, the Massachusetts Restaurant Association and others filed a lawsuit against the Massachusetts measure, and NPPC also challenged a similar law in California.
Source : Gazette