Canada Gears Up for Prop 12 Uncertainty

Canada Gears Up for Prop 12 Uncertainty

With California’s Prop 12 implementation just weeks away, producers on both sides of the northern border brace for impact. Although the strict law mandating rigid animal confinement regulations is for in-state product sales, the implications extend to other states, and furthermore, beyond U.S. borders. Canadian hog producers are likely to feel shockwaves from the new confinement regulations, due in part to the country’s significant hog trade with the U.S.

Executive Director of the Canadian Pork Council Stephen Heckbert says the language of the new legislation isn’t clear, and producers, legislators, and the federal government seem to be confused on how enacting Prop 12 will even be possible.

Put simply, because a law like Prop 12 requires tracking, California needs to hire and send off inspectors to ensure the pork coming into California is Prop 12 compliant. Heckbert says Canada would never allow that.

“There's 50 American states, and you can't operate a trade agreement with 50 individual states. We have to count on the United States government as being our trading partner. We've negotiated a free trade agreement with the United States, and from our perspective, that's the trade agreement that would govern Commerce between our 2 countries, not a state regulation. There's either a national standard or there isn't.”

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