Brownfield Ag News
By Larry Lee
The leader of the Organization for Competitive Markets tells Brownfield they are getting more support from other groups for a bill that would block any future agribusiness mergers and acquisitions. Joe Maxwell tells Brownfield, “It’s time to put a stop, hit the pause button on these mega-mergers until the Congress can take a look and see what we need to do in this country to give a fair opportunity for family farmers.”
Maxwell says they helped draft legislation introduced this week in the U.S. Senate by Democrat Cory Booker of New Jersey. Maxwell says the bill is modeled after a proposal by the late Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone, and Wisconsin Congressman Mark Pocan is working on a companion bill in the House.
Maxwell says the legislation would help farmers and consumers. “Farmers are being squeezed. The profits are being extracted and the wealth out of rural communities, and all of that money is going into the pockets of large multinational corporations and consumers are being gouged on the other end.”
National Farmers Union backs the Booker bill. R-CALF USA also supports it, saying their members passed a resolution earlier this month against further mergers.
Maxwell says if passed, the bill would establish a commission to review mergers, concentration, and market power in the ag and food sectors.