WASHINGTON— Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced additional updates to the Packers and Stockyards Act (P&S Act) rules at an event with Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust Jonathan Kanter. The “Fair and Competitive Livestock and Poultry Markets” proposed rule is meant to strengthen P&S Act enforcement by creating a framework to assess “unfair practices” claims by family livestock producers who are harmed by meatpackers. 

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Rob Larew expressed appreciation for the announcement: “We commend Secretary Vilsack and the Biden-Harris Administration for the continued progress in issuing important updates to the P&S Act. Family farmers and ranchers continue to face unfair practices at the hands of monopolistic meatpackers, and they need P&S Act rules that are clear, durable, and enforceable. NFU looks forward to fully reviewing the rule to ensure it protects farmers from abuses in the marketplace.” 

NFU’s Fairness for Farmers campaign has brought the devastating impact of monopolies on family agriculture into the national spotlight. Updating and strengthening enforcement of the P&S Act is a central priority of the campaign and NFU’s grassroots policy. 

This proposed rule is the fourth in a series of P&S Act updates issued by USDA in recent years, with two of the rules finalized over the past year. The rules have addressed issues of discrimination, retaliation and deception against livestock producers by meatpackers, and several issues specific to poultry contracting. 


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