In taking office this week, one of President Trump’s first actions was to sign an executive order withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. The Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) thanks President Trump for promptly fulfilling one of his campaign promises.
After signing the executive order, President Trump stated, “It’s a great thing for the American worker…” OCM fully understands it is also a great thing for the American family farmer and the U.S. rural economy.
“Unfair trade deals of past administrations have been a leading cause of the loss of many of our independent family farmers and with them America’s rural economy,” stated Mike Weaver, President of OCM. “The President’s action not only fulfills a campaign promise, but it restores hope for ‘Making America Great Again’ by having trade deals that work for America’s family farmer.”
OCM encourages the President to ensure that markets here at home also work for America’s family farmers. The extreme concentration and collusion among the top four integrators, packers and processors are squeezing farmers out of business and costing U.S. consumers in the process.
Past administrations’ lack of anti-trust enforcement has resulted in the top four companies in the food sector controlling the majority of the market. In the beef industry, the top four packers control over 80% of the market and in the pork industry they control over 60%. With China’s Smithfield being the largest U.S. pork producer and Brazil’s JBS Swift being the largest U.S. beef producer, this lack of anti-trust enforcement has become a food security and national security issue.
“For the U.S. economy to work, there must be market safeguards that ensure an open, transparent and fair market opportunity,” explained Weaver. “We call on the President to support the USDA GIPSA rules that were issued on December 14, 2016, as they provide fair market opportunity for America’s independent family farmers; doing otherwise simply helps multinational corporations that too far often extract the wealth from rural America and ship it overseas.”
Media Contact: Angela Huffman, 614-390-7552