OCM Beef Checkoff Transparency Lawsuit Moves Forward

In a FOIA case four years in the making, USDA is forced to explain to the court why it will not release government audit documents Lincoln, NE — Yesterday marked the start of the most critical phase in a four-year legal battle between family farmers and ranchers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) over USDA’s refusal to release public audit and financial documents related to Beef Checkoff Program spending. By law, farmers and ranchers are mandated to Read More …

Over 200 Farm, Food and Rural Groups Endorse Agribusiness Merger Moratorium Bills

Broad and Diverse Coalition Urges Members of Congress to Cosponsor Landmark Legislation Washington, D.C. — Today, a broad-based coalition of 213 farm, food, rural, faith and consumer advocacy organizations delivered a letter to Congress endorsing food and agribusiness merger moratorium bills and urging members of the House and Senate to cosponsor the legislation. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Representative Mark Pocan (D-WI) introduced the Food and Agribusiness Merger Moratorium and Antitrust Review Act of 2018 companion bills this Read More …

Federal Hearing: Family Farmers Take USDA to Court for GIPSA Rule Withdrawal

Family Farmers and Ranchers Sue Secretary Perdue for Illegally Halting Protections from Big Ag Abuses Farmers from Nebraska and Alabama Push Back Against Administration’s Attempt to Dismiss Their Concerns, Call on President Trump to Keep Promise to ‘Stand by America’s Farmers’ St. Louis, Mo. — Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit heard oral arguments in a lawsuit challenging the Trump Administration’s unlawful rollback of critical protections designed to safeguard family farms and ranches from predatory and Read More …

New Report Details Challenges Facing Ohio Family Farmers

Columbus, OH – Today, in a joint briefing with Family Farm Action, the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) released a report outlining the dire state of Ohio family farmers and rural communities under pressure from the growth of global agriculture corporate giants. Agribusiness firms that control inputs such as seed and chemicals and meat processing have seen extreme consolidation in recent years, to the point of creating near monopolies. As a result, family farmers, once the economic engine Read More …

Nationwide Campaign Calls on Aramark, Compass Group, and Sodexo to Reform Unjust Business Practices, Invest in Real Food

Diverse coalition launches campaign to transform business practices in the food service management industry The Community Coalition for Real Meals launched a nationwide campaign today urging the country’s three largest food service management companies  – Aramark, Compass Group, and Sodexo – to reorient their business models away from a system of exclusive relationships with Big Food corporations toward greater investments in Real Food that supports producers, communities, and the environment. The Coalition includes the Domestic Fair Trade Association, Fair Read More …

OCM Supports Moratorium on Agriculture and Food Acquisitions and Mergers

New Legislation Introduced by Senator Booker Will Hit the Pause Button on Mega-Mergers In the wake of unprecedented concentration in the agriculture and food sectors, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced legislation yesterday to place a moratorium on large agribusiness, food and beverage manufacturing, and grocery retail mergers and acquisitions. S. 3404, known as the Food and Agribusiness Merger Moratorium and Antitrust Review Act of 2018, would also establish a commission to review mergers, concentration, and market power in those Read More …

USDA Extends Deadline for “Product of U.S.A.” Comment Period

Citing “significant interest from stakeholders,” the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) approved a request from the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) and American Grassfed Association (AGA) to extend the public comment period for the groups’ petition to stop imported meat from being mislabeled “Product of U.S.A.” The new deadline for comments is Sept. 17, 2018. The OCM and AGA joint petition, filed on June 12, 2018, would restore the original FSIS handbook Read More …

Farmers Caught in Trade War File New Brief in Suit Challenging Rollback of Protections from Big Ag Abuse

Washington, D.C. — On behalf of the Organization for Competitive Markets and individual farmers, Democracy Forward replied to the Trump Administration’s attempt to keep independent farmers out of court in their suit challenging the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s unlawful withdrawal of rules designed to protect family farms from big agribusiness abuse. The brief comes as President Trump’s trade war escalates and highlights the extent to which family farmers are paying the price for Trump Administration policies here at home. Illegally stripped of Read More …