A U.S. district Court has dismissed a lawsuit filed by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) over the National Pork Board's purchase of the "Pork, The Other White Meat" trademark from the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC). HSUS, which was joined in the suit by a lone Iowa pork producer and the Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, sued USDA and Secretary Tom Vilsack over approval of the trademark purchase and the Pork Board's annual payments to NPPC.
HSUS argued the sale and payments were unlawful since the Pork Board is prohibited from using checkoff dollars to influence legislation. In dismissing the case, the ruled the plaintiffs lacked standing and that no one had suffered any injury from the Agriculture Secretary's actions.
Reacting to the dismissal, NPPC President Randy Spronk, "If I were a donor to HSUS, I would be very disturbed that my money was wasted on yet another expensive lawsuit that had nothing to do with improving the welfare of farm animals. This is clearly a vendetta against the U.S. pork industry by the leadership of HSUS, which has made their mission to permanently end animal agriculture very clear. It was frivolous and a waste of the taxpayers' money and the court's time. HSUS donors deserve better than that."