Exploring the “My” in My Beef Checkoff

By Vaughn Meyer with Angela Huffman In 1984, U.S. cattle producers voted to establish the Beef Checkoff Program as a means to promote their own product, U.S. beef. From the very beginning the beef checkoff was touted as a producer self-help program financed by all producers through a dollar per head assessment on every animal sold. From the very beginning cattle producers began questioning the underlying motive of their checkoff.  It soon became apparent that importers, retailers and Read More …

NCBA Attempts to Distract from Checkoff Abuse

By Fred Stokes Founding member, Organization for Competitive Markets In its recent propaganda piece being circulated in agriculture news outlets, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) tries to draw attention away from the growing outcry for checkoff program reform by making The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) a boogeyman. The truth is, farmers and ranchers want the corrupt, broken program reformed; more than 250,000 of them made their case to Congress earlier this week. Bipartisan legislation is Read More …

Over 250,000 Farmers, Organizations, and Businesses Urge Congress to Pass Meaningful Checkoff Program Reform

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 27, 2017 Media Contacts: Bill Bullard, 406-252-2516, [email protected] Angela Huffman, 614-390-7552, [email protected] Over 250,000 Farmers, Organizations, and Businesses Urge Congress to Pass Meaningful Checkoff Program Reform WASHINGTON, D.C. – In letters to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, more than 80 organizations, representing over 250,000 ranchers, farmers and businesses called on Congress to fix the federal government’s failed commodity checkoff tax programs by supporting recently introduced legislation that, when passed, will bring much Read More …

Tri-State Livestock News: Deja-vu for Checkoff Legislation: If at first you don’t succeed…

Tri-State Livestock News By Traci Eatherton In late March, Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced new legislation, hoping to add what they call “much needed transparency and accountability” to checkoff programs. Opportunities for Fairness in Farming Act of 2017 (OFF Act), along with a companion bill, the Voluntary Checkoff Act, is being praised by R-CALF. According to Bill Bullard, R-CALF CEO, the two bills were introduced too late last session for a full consideration in Read More …

USDA Claims Confidentiality for 12,000 Pages of Federal Checkoff Spending Records

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OCM Moves Forward in Freedom of Information Case despite USDA’s Attempt to Conceal NCBA’s Abuses of Beef Checkoff Funds LINCOLN, NE – March 31, 2017 was the USDA’s court-ordered deadline to choose transparency or secrecy in a lawsuit over records from an audit initiated in 2011 of the federal Beef Checkoff Program. It chose secrecy. Out of a total of 12,341 pages of financial records from the audit and sought by the Organization for Competitive Read More …

A Dairy Farmer’s Perspective: Checkoff Reform Needed to Save American Family Farms

By Brenda Cochran My name is Brenda Cochran. My husband, Joe, who was born on a dairy farm in Baltimore County, Maryland, and I have been dairy farmers since 1975, raising our 14 children dairy farming in Maryland and Pennsylvania. Our family is still dairy farming today, in Tioga County, Pennsylvania, with increasing difficulty, under virtually unbearable pressures due to coercive and restrictive government policies that, among other burdens, limit the price we get paid for our cows’ Read More …

Federal Lawmakers Reintroduce Commodity Checkoff Reform Legislation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WASHINGTON, D.C. – Federal lawmakers reintroduced legislation today to bring much needed transparency and accountability to the federal government’s commodity checkoff programs. The Opportunities for Fairness in Farming (OFF) Act, S. 741, was introduced by Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Cory Booker (D-NJ), while Reps. Dave Brat (R-VA) and Dina Titus (D-NV) introduced companion legislation in the House, H.R. 1753. The Voluntary Checkoff Act, S. 740, was reintroduced by Senator Lee, and companion legislation, H.R. 1752, was introduced Read More …

Agriculture.com: SF Special: A Constant Battle for Beef Checkoff Transparency

Agriculture.com By Anna McConnell 3/21/2017  It all started when former Kansas City Star investigative reporter Mike McGraw overheard a conversation at the 2012 National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. Five years later, he’s unsure exactly what he heard and can’t locate his notes from the convention, but it was enough that the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) started balling its fists and marching toward the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board (CBB), also known as the Read More …