Judge dismisses lawsuit over ungraded butter ban

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by an Ohio dairy operation against Wisconsin officials over the state's ban on the sale of ungraded butter.

Minerva Dairy, of Minerva, Ohio, argued the ban unconstitutionally protected large Wisconsin-based dairies. The dairy had sold artisanal butter in Wisconsin until February 2017 when state inspectors discovered its product was ungraded and ordered the company to comply with the law.

The State Journal reports U.S. District Judge James Peterson, in a ruling Monday, says the state has the right to require grade labels on retail butter so that consumers can purchase the product with confidence in its quality.

The Pacific Legal Foundation represented Minerva in the lawsuit. The foundation's Joshua Thompson says an appeal is planned.

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