Cattlemen Request Reformed Market Structure

US - U.S. cattle producers asked Congress to correct the deficiencies in the U.S. livestock market that presently give the nation’s largest meatpackers a distinct pricing advantage over domestic cattle prices and have resulted in an erosion of competition for livestock producers.
calendar icon 23 April 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
This was the message contained in testimony given today by R-CALF USA Region VII Director Eric Nelson during today’s Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee hearing on competition issues, titled “Economic Challenges and Opportunities Facing American Agricultural Producers.” Nelson is an Iowa cow/calf producer and feedlot owner.

“Independent livestock producers cannot match the economic or political power held by the nations’ largest meatpackers,” Nelson said. “We cannot expect to level the playing field by correcting the deficiencies within our industry’s framework through negotiations with the meatpacking sector. Ironically, we are in an intense competition to win back competition.”

Nelson also told the committee that the producers’ success in winning back competition depended on Congress.

“Due to the radical changes that occurred within the structure of the U.S. cattle market n including the unprecedented consolidation of the meatpacking industry and the introduction and increased use of non-traditional contracting and marketing methods n the U.S. cattle market is producing results that are inconsistent with a competitive market,” Nelson said.

“Consumers are now paying nearly twice the value for fresh cuts of beef than what the cattle producer receives for each animal sold to a meatpacker,” he explained. “The price the consumer is now paying for fresh cuts of beef have more than doubled since 1990, and while the cattle producers’ price increased by only $89 per carcass by 2006, the price the consumer paid for beef had increased $580 per carcass during the same period.

Source: The Prairie Star
© 2000 - 2024 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.