WASHINGTON – The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) dismissed a recent lawsuit filed by The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) as lacking merit and the latest in a series of bullying tactics.

HSUS and Harvey Dillenburg, an Iowa pork producer, filed a federal lawsuit that alleges the NPPC sold its "Pork: The Other White Meat" slogan to the National Pork Board and unlawfully used the $60 million in proceeds to fund anti-animal welfare campaigns. HSUS is asking the court to block the purchase and stop payments related to the transaction.

“NPPC is reviewing the HSUS complaint, but it appears there is no legal merit to this claim, and it is another desperate attempt by the radical activist group to severely curtail animal agriculture and take away consumer food choices,” the council responded in a statement. “What does merit concern, however, is the fact that HSUS preys on the emotions of domestic pet owners with deceptive advertising and fundraising. It raises money on images of abused puppies without homes, yet virtually none of those funds go to local shelters.

“Instead those dollars go toward multimillion dollar campaigns to attack family farmers and American meat production,” NPPC added.

The NPPC has steadfastly supported allowing producers to choose which confinement systems to use on their hog operations. The council also has opposed the Egg Bill, which would require egg producers to use larger and more comfortable cages to house hens. NPPC said HSUS is attempting to bully the council into abandoning its position on those issues.

“Over the past few months, HSUS has threatened NPPC with a Federal Trade Commission complaint; filed notice of its intent to sue a number of hog operations over alleged emissions reporting violations; and charged that NPPC was responsible for the deaths of hogs in barn fires because the organization asked to give input on national fire standards for agricultural facilities,” NPPC said in the statement.” All of the allegations lack merit.”