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Email Content: Poultry Industry News, Comments and more by Simon M. Shane

ALDF Lawsuit Against Hormel to Proceed


The U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit has reversed a ruling by the Washington DC Superior Court allowing a lawsuit by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) to proceed.  At issue is the advertising claim by Hormel Foods Corp that hogs used to produce the Natural Choice™ brand of bacon and lunch meat products are treated humanely.  This contention was questioned following an undercover investigation into mishandling of herds operated by The Maschhoffs, a supplier to Hormel.


The ALDF claimed in their appeal that the Consumer Protection Procedures Act entitled the organization to bring suit on behalf of consumers.  The court accepted this argument and also dismissed the Hormel assertion that advertising claims were protected by USDA label laws.  The Appeals Court clearly distinguished between label and advertising claims.


The decision by the DC Circuit Appeals Court creates opportunities for animal activist organizations to sue food producers making claims regarding humane treatment.  These organizations will apparently have standing under the Consumer Protection Procedures Act.

Copyright © 2021 Simon M. Shane