The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a lower court’s ruling
dismissing a challenge to California’s law criminalizing the sale or
distribution of shark fin. Chinatown Neighborhood Ass’n v. Harris,
No. 14-15781 (9th Cir., order entered July 27, 2015). The plaintiffs, two
groups representing Asian-Americans who seek to serve shark-fin soup,
a traditional Chinese dish, argued that the law violates the Commerce
Clause of the U.S. Constitution and is preempted by the Magnuson-Stevens
Act. The Ninth Circuit rejected the claims, finding that the lower
court did not err in refusing to grant leave to the organizations so that
they could fully brief the preemption issue. Further, the shark-fin ban
does not violate the Commerce Clause, the court found, because the
effects on interstate commerce result from regulation of in-state conduct.
Additional details about the groups’ complaint appear in Issue 447 of
this Update.


Issue 574

About The Author

For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.