Cattle Producer’s Forum Provides First Glance at USDA AMS Approach to Next Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting Reauthorization
WASHINGTON – Cattle producers in attendance at the inaugural Cattle Producer’s Forum were the first to receive news on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) next steps toward addressing the most recent reauthorization of Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting (LMR). This year’s reauthorization resulted in a replica of prior year’s bills, due to a lack of consensus within the industry. However, one item was successfully attached to the reauthorization bill and requires the USDA Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) to conduct a comprehensive study of the program, to be submitted to Congress by March 1, 2018.
As a first step in the process, USDA AMS has conducted a baseline analysis, taking into account the current state of the U.S. livestock marketplace. As reported directly to the Forum’s attendees, and subsequently written here in panelist AMS Deputy Administrator Craig Morris’ USDA blog post, several key factors were identified as points for consideration in the next stage of the study:
- “With greater vertical integration and concentration in the industry, the negotiated markets have become thinner, and consequently, the LMR confidentiality requirements have limited the depth of market information provided in some markets that the industry needs.”
- “greater variety of meat products in the marketplace today than ever before”
- “over the past 15 years packers have become larger, more concentrated, and more vertically integrated”
- “the use of LMR information has expanded beyond price discovery”
In addition to these points, Deputy Administrator Craig Morris also reported to Forum attendees the intent of USDA AMS to conduct a series of stakeholder meetings to discuss the challenges and goals related to LMR and the next reauthorization. USCA will bring the ideas and discussions from this year’s Cattle Producer’s Forum to these meetings, ensuring all U.S. cattle producers have a seat at the table to voice support for necessary revisions and enhancements to LMR.
Established in March 2007, USCA is committed to concentrating its efforts in Washington, D.C. to enhance and expand the cattle industry’s voice on Capitol Hill. USCA has a full-time presence in Washington, giving cattle producers across the country a strong influence on policy development. For more information go to www.uscattlemen.org