Renowned MSU animal law professor David Favre discusses Supreme Court decision


Michigan State University College of Law Professor David Favre was featured in the August issue of Meatingplace Magazine discussing the recent Supreme Court ruling on Proposition 12 and the evolution of animal law.

In May, the Supreme Court rejected a challenge to California Proposition 12 by a vote of 5-4, upholding the statewide ban on the sale of pork from pigs “confined in a cruel manner.”

The Supreme Court case, decided on May 11, 2023, brought by the National Pork Producers Council and others against California’s Proposition 12, involved forbidding the in-state sale of whole pork meat that comes from breeding pigs (or their immediate offspring) that are “confined in a cruel manner.” Confinement is “cruel” if it prevents a pig from “lying down, standing up, fully extending [its] limbs, or turning around freely.”

Animal rights advocates hailed the ruling as a “watershed moment” that, among other things, could impact what Americans pay for pork at the grocery store. 

In a Q&A with Meatingplace, Professor Favre was asked about the significance of the ruling and what it might mean in the future in terms of animal law. He was also asked about other animal law issues, a topic that has grown in importance in recent years. 

“(Animals are) not just property, they’re property plus,” he said. “They’re not widgets.” Read the complete article featuring Professor Favre on page 76 in the Meatingplace Magazine. Meatingplace is an industry-wide information source for the red meat and poultry industry in the U.S. and Canada.

Professor Favre, MSU College of Law Professor and The Nancy Heathcote Professor of Property and Animal Law, is one of the foremost legal scholars in the nation on animal rights and law. 

He is the author of eight books on animal law, has spoken at dozens of conferences around the world on the topic, co-founded the Animal Legal Defense Fund in 1983, and edits the largest animal law website in the world,