Articles Posted in Agriculture Law

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Plaintiffs contend that the FDA is required by 21 U.S.C. 360b(e)(1) to proceed with hearings to determine whether to withdraw approval for the use of penicillin and tetracyclines in animal feed, and that the FDA's denial of two citizen petitions demanding such hearings was arbitrary or capricious within the meaning of 5 U.S.C. 706(2). Based on the court's survey of the text, the context, the regulations, and the background legal principles, the court concluded that Congress has not required the FDA to hold hearings whenever FDA officials have scientific concerns about the safety of animal drug usage, that the FDA retains the discretion to institute or terminate proceedings to withdraw approval of animal drugs by issuing or withdrawing notices of opportunity for hearing (NOOHs), and that the statutory mandate contained in section 360b(e)(1) applies to limit the FDA's remedial discretion by requiring withdrawal of approval of animal drugs or particular uses of such drugs only when the FDA has made a final determination, after notice and hearing, that the drug could pose a threat to human health and safety. The court also concluded that it is not arbitrary or capricious for the FDA to pursue policies intended to reduce the use of animal feed containing antibiotics through a variety of steps short of withdrawing approval for the use of antibiotics in feed via a protracted administrative process and likely litigation. Accordingly, the court reversed the district court's judgment to the contrary and remanded for further proceedings.View "NRDC v. US FDA" on Justia Law

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Plaintiffs appeal from an order of the district court dismissing their complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief could be granted. Plaintiffs argued that New York's Kosher Law Protection Act of 2004 (Kosher Act), N.Y. Agric. & Mkts. Law 201-a-201-d, violated the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment and was unconstitutionally vague. The court held that the Kosher Act did not violate the Establishment Clause because it neither advanced or impeded religion, had a secular purpose, and did not create an excessive entanglement between state and religion. The court further held that the Kosher Act did not violate the Free Exercise Clause because it was neutral, generally applicable, minimally burdensome, and had a rational basis. Finally, even under the strictest scrutiny, the inspection provision was not void for vagueness. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment. View "Commack Self-Service Kosher v. Hooker" on Justia Law