Policy Brief: Consolidation, Globalization, and the American Family Farm

Consolidation and globalization in the food industry have reached a point where the top four firms in almost every sector have acquired abusive levels of power. This corporate control has allowed the top firms to reap record profits, paying lower prices to the farmers who produce our food and charging higher prices to consumers on the retail side. The U.S. is losing farmers at an alarming rate, agricultural jobs and wages are drying up, and rural communities are Read More …

Policy Position: Restore the Packers and Stockyards Act

Following is OCM’s policy position on restoring the Packers and Stockyards Act to its original intent. 1. Implement federal legislation that amends Packers and Stockyards Act, 1921(P&S Act) to provide that the use of a ranking system for ranking poultry growers for settlement purposes is unfair, unjustly discriminatory, or deceptive and a strict violation of section 202(a) of the P&S Act regardless of whether it harms or is likely to harm competition. 2. Implement federal legislation that is Read More …

Basis for OCM’s FOIA Claim Regarding Beef Checkoff Program

In 2010, the Clifton Gunderson Accounting Firm performance review, commissioned by the Cattlemen’s Beef Board, examined one percent of expenditures and personnel time cards charged by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) to the Beef Checkoff Program over a 29-month period ending in 2010. This was in effect the equivalent of nine days of activity. Numerous irregularities were uncovered which resulted in the NCBA being required to return to the National Beef Board more than $200,000. These irregularities included improper Read More …

The Fertilizer Oligopoly: The Case for Global Antitrust Enforcement

AAI Working Paper No. 13-05: by Author: C. Robert Taylor and Diana L. Moss Fertilizers are a critical input in the agricultural sector where industrial farming is heavily dependent on external inputs of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium or potash. A history of supra-competitive pricing by the few, large global producers of fertilizer inputs – coupled with characteristics that make the market conducive to anticompetitive coordination (i.e., collusion) – raise significant competitive concerns. This working paper qualitatively and quantitatively Read More …

Briefing Paper: Money Talks, but Its Language Is Vulgar

With a highly-concentrated industry and uncontrolled lobbying on elected officials, there is no way for ordinary people to expect their voices to be heard over the sounds of spending by huge vested interests. This document provides an overview of agribusiness spending in the 2016 election cycle. Read more.

Briefing Paper: When Small Is Big

By David A Domina & C Robert Taylor, PhD Livestock economists who look only at cash movement and do not analyze profitability outcome sometimes conclude that the effect of market power and captive supplies is “small.” They dismiss this “small” impact lightly, but ignore the fact that the impact they concede is the difference between profit and loss – the economic equivalent of the difference between life and death. Read more.