I love me some NPR. I love it for so many reasons: news, but not just any news, local news, regional news, and international news, not to mention sports, music, and the arts. On a sunny day, there is nothing like a drive in the car with my radio tuned to my favorite local NPR station, WOUB. And, Sunday evenings in my house wouldn’t be the same without WNKU‘s Katie telling Wayne to “Mash the Button Wayne”.
Recently, I’ve noticed a trend as I tune in to the various NPR stations that are within my radio’s reach. The reporters are talking quite a bit about food and the rules and regulations surrounding the food industry (what a loaded word) in the United States and abroad. About a week ago, I heard a story that piqued my interest. It’s titled: “States Fight California’s Chicken Cage Law. But It’s Really About Bacon”. If you haven’t heard about it, you can click the link here to listen to the story.
In summary, in 2008, California voters enacted a law that goes into effect in 2015 that requires any eggs sold in California to be laid by chickens that that have enough room to extend their wings and turn around. Some farmers, including hog farmers, are upset about it because they fear that additional regulations might be coming that could cost them additional money or put them out of business. So, Missouri sued and several other states, including Iowa, Nebraska, Alabama, Oklahoma, and Kentucky, which supply eggs to California, have joined in the lawsuit alleging violations of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause.
As an attorney, I wonder if it will pass muster in the face of the historic case law surrounding the Commerce Clause, but as a supporter of local food and as a supporter of knowing my farmer and knowing how my food is produced, I think it is a step in the right direction.
What do you think?