July 31, 2009
NAIS and Amish: District Court Dismisses Suit Against USDA, Grants Michigan Dept of Ag's Motion for Summary Judgment
Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund sued USDA and the Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) to enjoin implementation of the National Animal Identification System as it applies to Amish farmers. District Court judge, Rosemary Collyer has dismissed the case against USDA and granted summary judgment to MDA.
The federal law does not require any particular form of state implementation, so the plaintiffs lack standing for the claim against USDA. In addition, the court found that the injury to plaintiffs stemmed from individual orders of the MDA and not from overall implementation of the program.
The opinion is available here. Among other things, it describes the Amish farmers' religious objections ot the NAIS program.
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