June 29, 2020


US lawmakers call for probe into anti-competitive practices of beef packing sector



US lawmakers, together with Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles and Attorney General Daniel Cameron, have asked the US Justice Department to investigate possible anti-competitive practices in the beef packing industry.


House and Senate members of the Interim Joint Agriculture Committee signed a letter sent to US Attorney General William Barr, stressing the need for confidence in the beef cattle market.


"We have heard from our constituents across the commonwealth about the wide disparity between the price of cattle and the price of processed beef," the legislators wrote. "Some of us are cattlemen ourselves and have personally witnessed this disparity."


"I am grateful to the bipartisan group of legislators who have joined the attorney general and me in asking the Department of Justice to keep a watchful eye on (suspected) price disparities between the price of beef at the farm level and at the grocery store," Quarles stated. "It is critical Kentucky's constitutional officers have the support from the General Assembly so we can have a united front on issues facing Kentucky families."


Cameron also expressed gratitude for the lawmakers' support, adding: "Kentucky's cattle producers deserve answers about why they are continuing to make less, even as the price of beef increases."


- Richmond Register