California’s Food Fight

California’s Food Fight

Richard A. Epstein
Show Date
April 24, 2022
Californiacommerce clause
Hoover InstitutionUniversity of ChicagoNew York University

Show date: Sunday, 4/24, 8am PACIFIC

Guest: Richard A. Epstein,

Hoover Senior Fellow and host of the Defining Ideas podcast “The Libertarian”, Richard Epstein returns to the program to discuss a new case making it’s way to the Supreme Court:

This past week, the Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal in an important case that could determine the structure of American interstate markets for years to come. National Pork Producers Council v. Ross involves a constitutional challenge to Proposition 12, a 2018 California referendum that requires all pork products sold in the state be prepared in facilities meeting California standards of animal health and safety, no matter where they are raised. As the plaintiffs explain in their brief, virtually all of the pork products (some 99.8 percent) sold in California come from out of state. On the flip-side, California represents 13 percent of the national consumer market for pork products.

In its unique and inverted version of federalism, California seems to always find a way to impose its own strict regulations on the rest of the country—using its economic might to foist “progressive values” on other states. Can California legislate outside its own borders? Well, it’s complicated.

As usual, when I’m faced with a complex hybrid legal/economic questions, I turn to the Libertarian himself. And as usual, we will try to pack a semester’s worth of economics into an hour of radio. Epstein holds positions as a law professor at NYU, a senior lecturer at the University of Chicago, and Senior fellowship at Stanford’s Hoover Institution.


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