NCBA Welcomes Bicameral Push for Swift Conclusion to DOJ Investigation
Today, Senator John Thune (R-SD) and Representative Dusty Johnson (R-SD-AL) led a bicameral letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, urging the Department of Justice to move forward with their investigation into anticompetitive practices in the meatpacking industry. "Despite strong consumer demand and reopening across much of the country, cattle producers face significant business challenges. The farmers and ranchers NCBA represents are contending with high market volatility, drought, and extreme input costs, and they can't capture the value they deserve for the high-quality product they supply," said NCBA Vice President of Government Affairs Ethan Lane. "We have a high supply of cattle at one end of this equation and a high demand for U.S. beef at the other, but the middle is being absolutely choked by the lack of processing capacity. It’s in the best interests of both producers and consumers for the Department of Justice to get to the bottom of the current market dynamics, and assess why they seemingly always result in producers getting the short end of the deal. Cattle producers deserve to know whether or not the price disparity that has plagued our market is the result of anti-competitive or other inappropriate practices in the packing sector. We thank Senator Thune and Congressman Johnson for keeping up the drumbeat on this critical issue. We hope their bicameral request for a progress report will be met at DOJ with the urgency it warrants, and we hope to see results from the Attorney General soon." NCBA has long worked to increase processing capacity and expand opportunities for producer profitability by lowering the hurdles for small and medium size processing facilities. Click here to read the full text of the letter.