America has a monopoly problem, and no sector is worse than food and agriculture.
In just the past two years, chemical and seed company acquisitions and mergers have allowed three companies to control two thirds of the crop seed and nearly 70% of the agricultural chemical markets. The four largest multinational corporations have gained control of 71% of the pork market, 85% of the beef market and 90% of the grain market.
Economists agree that more than 40% consolidation by the top four corporations in a sector indicates a highly concentrated market where abuses are likely. From collusion and price fixing to hike up prices for consumers to predatory and retaliatory practices against producers, we know that corporate abuses are not only likely, they are rampant.
Legislation has been filed in Congress that would finally address America’s monopoly problem. It would place an 18-month moratorium on large agribusiness, food and beverage manufacturing, and grocery retail mergers and acquisitions. Known as the Food and Agribusiness Merger Moratorium and Antitrust Review Act of 2018 (Sen. Booker S.3404/Rep. Pocan H.R. 6800), the legislation would also establish a commission to review mergers, concentration, and market power in those sectors and develop recommendations to establish a fair marketplace for family farmers and their communities.
This is just the beginning, and we need your help to make a strong showing of support for the new legislation. Will you add your name to our petition calling for a moratorium on food and agriculture mega-mergers?