The US has among the weakest farm-animal-welfare standards in the developed world. Although improvements in farm-animal welfare are economically feasible, nations and states enacting protective regulation are threatened by competition with cheaper, non-compliant imports. Although recognition in trade agreements and restrictions on sale could help to protect animal welfare, they may rarely be politically feasible. Campaigns directed at consumers and retailers are likely to be more cost-effective than production-related regulations in improving animal welfare and are also compatible with abolitionist objectives.
Gaverick Matheny & Cheryl Leahy,
Farm-Animal Welfare, Legislation, and Trade,
70 Law and Contemporary Problems
Available at: http://scholarship.law.duke.edu/lcp/vol70/iss1/10