Four Questions for Dr. Mary Hendrickson About Fair Farm and Food Markets

We are starting 2019 with a one-of-a-kind educational opportunity for OCM members. Dr. Mary Hendrickson of the University of Missouri is kicking off our #AgJustice webinar series on February 26th. Dr. Hendrickson will be speaking about her research on developing a framework for evaluating the fairness of agricultural markets and sharing her expertise on resisting consolidation. In anticipation of our webinar, we hosted a Twitterview (Twitter interview) with Dr. Hendrickson. Read on for a few of her thoughts Read More …

OCM’s Top 10 Stories of 2018

Here are the 10 stories that received the most traffic on the OCM website in 2018. Which issue is most important to you? Share your top pick with us in the comments. 10.  GIPSA is Dead; the Fight for Producer Protections Continues 9.    New Legislation Would Hit Pause on Mega-Mergers 8.    Petition Filed to End USDA Practice of Allowing Imported Meat to be Labeled “Product of U.S.A.” 7.    DOJ Approval of Bayer-Monsanto Mega-Merger Hangs Farmers Out to Dry 6.  Read More …

2018 in Review

As 2018 draws to a close, OCM members and supporters should be proud of the successes we have gained together through our hard work and dedication. Our 20th year has clearly been one of our most impactful yet. Here’s why: OCM’s 20th Annual Food & Agriculture Conference We celebrated our 20th anniversary with a highly successful annual conference in Kansas City, MO. Speakers included Federal Trade Commissioner Rohit Chopra and Dr. Ricardo Salvador, director of the Food and Read More …

Voice from the Ranch: Nebraska Cattle Producer Screwed by JBS Speaks the Truth

The world’s largest beef processing corporation, JBS, is underpaying family farmers and ranchers for their cattle. Even worse, our government is letting them get away with it. A recent announcement of yet another case where a JBS meatpacking plant failed to properly weigh and keep track of cattle delivered to its plant resulted in a paltry settlement between JBS and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), highlighting how USDA is failing the American farmer and rancher. USDA Secretary Read More …

GIPSA is Dead; the Fight for Producer Protections Continues

In a move designed to take a thorn out of the side of the world’s largest meatpackers, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue put the final nail in the coffin of the Grain Inspection, Packers, and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) by formalizing the elimination of the standalone agency and transferring its delegation to the historically big agribusiness-friendly Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Among its duties, the now defunct GIPSA agency was responsible for enforcement of antitrust law in Read More …

Nov. 2018 Drovers Poll: Beef Checkoff Not Working for Cattle Producers

On November 13, 2018, Drovers issued a poll asking the question, “Do you believe the Beef Checkoff is helping to stimulate beef demand and support your cattle business?” Two days later, the polling showed that 70 percent of Drovers’ audience who responded voted no. Even more telling was the more than 50 comments on the poll, which were removed from Drovers’ website that afternoon. However, screenshots of the deleted comments were preserved. See all of the deleted comments Read More …

Latest Beef Recall Exposes Illusion of Choice

This past week, almost seven million pounds of JBS beef were recalled after 57 people in 16 states were sickened by Salmonella poisoning. No surprise here. Just last year, JBS was caught exporting rotten beef worldwide and trying to cover up the stench using cancer-causing acid products. The latest JBS tainted meat scandal not only continues to ring alarm bells about the safety of JBS beef, but it also shows how few choices consumers actually have in the Read More …

Another Decade to Wait for Meaningful GIPSA Antitrust Enforcement? Hell No!

We had our day in court. On Wednesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit heard oral arguments in our lawsuit challenging the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s unlawful rollback of critical protections designed to safeguard family farms and ranches from predatory and retaliatory practices by big agribusiness corporations. Appearing on behalf of the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) and independent farmers, Democracy Forward argued that USDA acted unlawfully in withdrawing the Farmer Fair Practices Rules, or GIPSA Rules, last Read More …