The Ohio Senate last week followed the state’s House by approving a resolution that would allow voters to create the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board, which would provide oversight of how farm animals are raised.

According to the Ohio Farm Bureau, the final version of the resolution, once approved, will put the measure on the November ballot. The board would include a broad base of experts in livestock and poultry care, including family farmers, veterinarians, a food safety expert, a representative of a local humane society, members from statewide farm organizations, the dean of an Ohio agriculture college and members representing Ohio consumers. The Ohio Farm Bureau and other agricultural groups support the legislation, which would provide workable, science-based standards for farm-animal well-being while protecting the state's farmers and consumers from more restrictive regulations pushed by activists. Read the text of the resolution.  

Legislators in Michigan are taking a similar approach. According to news reports, two Michigan Representatives have introduced bills that would establish science-based standards for livestock care. More than 15 ag organizations, including the Michigan Farm Bureau, support the legislation, while animal-rights groups such as Farm Sanctuary and the Humane Society of the United States plan to oppose it.