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• Ralphs Grocery Co. has won an appeals court case aimed at preventing union groups from picketing on the company’s private property at its Fresno, California store. According to a statement by the company’s attorneys, Morrison & Foerster, “In a published opinion, a three judge panel of California’s Fifth Appellate District reversed a Fresno Superior Court’s order denying Ralphs’ motion for a preliminary injunction and remanded for further proceedings.

“The case, Ralphs Grocery Company v. United Food and Commercial  Workers Union Local 8, stems from attempts beginning in January 2008 by the grocery company to implement rules restricting the time, place, and manner of ‘expressive activities’ outside its non-union Foods Co. warehouse store—rules that were ignored by union picketers. 

“Ralphs’ lawsuit challenged the constitutionality of California’s 1975 Moscone Act, which deprives state courts of jurisdiction to issue injunctions against ‘peaceful picketing or patrolling involving any labor dispute,’ and Labor Code section 1131.8, which independently imposes severe restrictions on a property owner’s right to obtain injunctive relief against unions.”
• The National Cooperative Grocers Association (NCGA) has expressed disappointment with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) decision to completely deregulate Monsanto’s Roundup Ready genetically engineered (GE) alfalfa.

“We appreciate that the USDA considered various options for the future of GE alfalfa, and had hoped that the voices of the hundreds of thousands of consumers who commented on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement [EIS] would result in a different outcome,” said Robynn Shrader, CEO at NCGA. “Like many, we are extremely disappointed with yesterday's announcement and will continue to champion for better protections for organic farmers and consumers, by all means afforded to us.”
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