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    Rutledge Supports President Trump’s Withdrawal of Harmful Livestock and Poultry Rule

    May 15, 2018

    Says, ‘We must continue to fight federal overreach and protect our farmers from burdensome regulations’

    LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has joined 15 other state attorneys general in filing an amicus brief supporting the Trump Administration’s withdrawal of the Obama-era 2017 Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices Rule. The states argue in the brief that the Rule, adopted on the last day of the Obama Administration, was both illegal and economically unjustifiable.

    “The Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices Rule is yet another example of the Obama Administration’s aggressive overreach and I applaud President Trump for removing this unnecessary regulation,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “We must continue to fight federal overreach and protect our farmers from burdensome regulations that only harm consumers by driving up food prices.”

    The 1990 Organic Foods Production Act was intended to impose specific feed and medicinal production standards for “USDA certified organic” products. In sharp contrast, the 2017 Rule focused almost entirely on animal care and living conditions, imposing stringent requirements that poultry have access to outdoor soil in order to fall under the label of “USDA certified organic.” The brief argues that the Obama USDA did not have statutory authority to enact animal-welfare regulations about outdoor access under the guise of regulating organic foods.

    Additionally, economic analysis demonstrates that this regulation would have been extremely harmful for small organic farmers and consumers. The high cost of complying with this rule would have likely driven many out of the organic farming business, leading to an estimated loss of $80-86 billion. Consumers would face rising costs for organic products and reduced choices for those products.

    Led by Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, Rutledge is joined on the brief by attorneys general from Alabama, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

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