2017 in Review

Building on OCM’s past 19 years of unwavering commitment to the fight for economic justice for America’s family farmers and ranchers, 2017 has proven to be one of the most impactful years yet. Here is your year in review. Fighting to End Big Ag’s Abuse of Family Farmers’ Checkoff Tax Dollars We worked with Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) to reintroduce federal legislation that would curb the rampant abuses of the $800,000,000 in commodity checkoff Read More …

Wisconsin Public Radio | How Much Farmland Is Owned By Foreign Interests? It’s Hard To Know.

Wisconsin Public Radio By Bridgit Bowden Foreign ownership of farmland has shot up in Wisconsin and across the country. But according to the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting, enforcement of the laws that regulate foreign ownership of farmland is lax. And because of that, we probably don’t know how much land is owned by foreign interests. Foreign companies that own agricultural land in the United States are required by the 1978 Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act to report it. But it’s Read More …

Meatingplace | Farm group sues USDA for withdrawal of GIPSA rule

Meatingplace By Susan Kelly The Organization for Competitive Markets, which represents family farm interests, is suing USDA for withdrawing a rule seen as offering farmers and ranchers protections in sales of live animals with meat and poultry processors. USDA announced in October it was withdrawing the interim final rule, an update to the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration’s (GIPSA) Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921. Known as the Farmer Fair Practice Rule, the set of regulations was widely opposed by the Read More …

NPR: The Salt | The USDA Rolled Back Protections For Small Farmers. Now The Farmers Are Suing

NPR: The Salt By Nancy Matsumoto  James Dinklage, a cattle rancher from Nebraska, is one of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed Thursday. The suit accuses the USDA of “arbitrary and capricious” behavior in rolling back two Obama-era rules designed to protect small farmers, who say they are being exploited by the meatpacking companies they supply. Courtesy Dinklage Family/Organization for Competitive Markets An organization representing the interests of small farmers across rural America fired a legal salvo Thursday Read More …

The New York Times | Lawsuit Challenges Cancellation of Farmer Fair Practice Rule

The New York Times By David Pitt, Associated Press DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Farmers in Alabama and Nebraska joined with a Nebraska-based fair trade group Thursday to sue the U.S. Department of Agriculture over the agency’s cancellation of an Obama-era plan that would have made it easier for farmers to demand better treatment when they contract with meatpacking companies. The lawsuit seeks to reverse the USDA’s October decision to vacate the Farmer Fair Practices Rule — regulations that would have, among Read More …

Farm Group Challenges Trump Administration’s Unlawful Rollback of Rules Protecting Farmers, Ranchers from Abuses by Big Agriculture

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Thursday, December 14, 2017 Farm Group Challenges Trump Administration’s Unlawful Rollback of Rules Protecting Farmers, Ranchers from Abuses by Big Agriculture Lawsuit Follows USDA’s Decision to Side with Major Meat Producers, Making It Harder for Farmers to Seek Relief from Abusive Big Ag Practices Washington, D.C.— On behalf of the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) and independent farmers from Alabama and Nebraska, Democracy Forward challenged the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for illegal rollback of Read More …

OCM Tells USDA to Reject Increased Poultry Line Speeds

The National Chicken Council (NCC) is on the verge of convincing the USDA to eliminate line speed limits in poultry plants. Jobs inside poultry plants are some of the most dangerous and difficult in America, and the risks to food workers and our food supply increase when the line speeds increase. OCM has joined with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) in opposing the chicken industry’s proposal by submitting comments to USDA, and we urge you to do the same. For Read More …

USDA Hides Thousands More Beef Checkoff Spending Records

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contact: Angela Huffman, 614-390-7552 [email protected] USDA Hides Thousands More Beef Checkoff Spending Records One week after GAO urges transparency, USDA continues to conceal checkoff information LINCOLN, NE – On November 27, 2017, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) was required to submit to the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) additional information related to an audit initiated in 2011 of the federal Beef Checkoff Program. USDA confirmed that it has in its possession more than Read More …