Proposition 12 and the Animal Care Program
Q: What is the Animal Care Program?
A: Animal Care is a new program within the Animal Health and Food Safety Services division of the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Animal Care was formed after the passing of Proposition 12 (2018) to implement the law and its first task has been joint promulgation of regulations with Department of Public Health in addition to outreach and education of stakeholders.
To serve animal agriculture producers and California consumers by promoting and protecting the welfare and care of animals in agriculture in order for Californians to have access to food that is sourced from humanely and sustainably raised animals.
On November 6, 2018, California voters approved Proposition 12, the Farm Animal Confinement Initiative, which amended requirements in Chapter 13.8, sections 25990 through 25994, of the Health and Safety Code (HSC), Proposition 2 (2008). This law requires that covered animals be housed in confinement systems that comply with specific minimum standards for freedom of movement, cage-free design, and minimum floor space, and identifies covered animals to include veal calves, breeding pigs and egg-laying hens, as specified.
The law prohibits a farm owner or operator from knowingly causing any covered animal to be confined in a cruel manner, as specified, and prohibits a business owner or operator from knowingly engaging in the sale within the state of shell eggs, liquid eggs, whole pork meat or whole veal meat, as defined, from covered animals confined in a cruel manner. The complete text of the law (HSC sections 25990–25994), including confinement requirements, definitions, compliance dates, exemptions and penalties is available here: HSC 25990-25994.
To view the full regulations and other resources, visit the Animal Care Program page HERE.