Iowa Sens. Ernst, Grassley push back on California’s animal welfare proposition

Published: Aug. 5, 2021 at 11:22 AM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Iowa Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst are pushing back against a California animal welfare proposition that will ban pork producers across the country from selling their products in the state unless they conform to the state’s regulations.

Ernst and Grassley are joined by Kansas Senator Roger Marshall and Texas Senator John Cornyn in introducing the Exposing Agricultural Trade Suppression (EATS) Act.

The senators say it will prohibit states like California from regulating how producers from other states raise their pigs and laying hens in order to sell pork and eggs there.

The Associated Press reports California will likely lose almost all of its pork supply next year, much of which comes from Iowa, when it begins enforcing the animal welfare law. It will require more space for farm animals, but farmers have little time to build new facilities to accommodate the rule before enforcement begins. Nevertheless, California will ban animal agriculture products that are non-compliant from being sold in the state.

In a press release, the Iowa senators said more than 20 states have challenged California’s proposition 12 because it will force meat producers to conform to animal rights standards adopted by California.

“We thought we’ve seen it all from the radical left – from defunding the police, to the Green New Deal, to trillions in new spending with skyrocketing inflation – but this takes it to a whole new level: banning bacon? No way, folks,” Senator Ernst said. “Radicals in liberal states like California shouldn’t be allowed to punish hardworking farmers and producers in Iowa, which is why I’m pushing to strip out this ridiculous law and ensure Iowans can continue selling the nation’s best pork, bacon, and eggs to Americans across the country.”

Under the EATS Act, states would still be able to regulate farming and ranching in their own state, but could not adopt laws impacting agricultural production outside their state.

“I don’t know why anyone would want to live in a state where it’s almost impossible to buy bacon. But California wants to impose such a rule on its residents,” Senator Grassley said. “Iowa has an abundance of agricultural products to offer and folks from coast to coast should be able to enjoy them. I’m glad to sponsor this bill which will protect Iowa farmers and producers and allow them the freedom to operate their farms as they see fit.”

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