New JBS Violations Highlight Weak Enforcement of Packers & Stockyards Act

Today, Organization for Competitive Markets received information indicating that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will be releasing the terms of a settlement agreement with JBS Swift over its gross mishandling of beef carcasses at its Grand Island, Nebraska facility, its largest beef processing plant in the U.S. This unconscionable practice led to probable underpayments to cattle producers in violation of the Packers & Stockyards Act. In a soon to be released press statement, AMS 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 …

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 …

Farmers Detail Harm Suffered at Hands of Big Ag Corporations in Our New Filing Against USDA

In December 2017, we sued the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for illegally withdrawing critical protections intended to shield family farmers and ranchers from predatory and retaliatory practices by big agribusiness corporations. These protections were known as the Farmer Fair Practices, or GIPSA Rules. Today, with legal representation by Democracy Forward, we filed a new brief in our suit. In it we detail the experiences of farmers and ranchers harmed by discrimination, blackballing, and other terrible tactics at Read More …

Don’t Throw the Baby out with the Bathwater: Not All Regulations Are Bad

Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) is celebrating its 20th birthday this year. Since its inception, OCM’s mission statement has included the following statement, “True competition reduces the need for economic regulation. Our mission, and our duty, is to define and advocate the proper role of government in the agricultural economy as a regulator and enforcer of rules necessary for markets that are fair, honest, accessible and competitive for all citizens.” OCM has always understood that to secure our Read More …

OCM Appalled by GIPSA Rule Withdrawal, Calls for Executive Order

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 17, 2017 OCM Appalled by GIPSA Rule Withdrawal, Calls for Executive Order Lincoln, NE – Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) announced it will withdraw the Farmer Fair Practices Interim Final Rule, Scope of Sections 202(a) and (b) of Packers and Stockyards Act, and take no further action on the proposed rule, Unfair Practices and Undue Preferences in Violation of the Packers and Stockyards Act. Thus Read More …

OCM Urges USDA to Finalize GIPSA Farmer Fair Practices Rule

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 16, 2017 OCM Urges USDA to Finalize GIPSA Farmer Fair Practices Rule Long-awaited marketplace safeguard would restore rights of U.S. farmers and ranchers Lincoln, NE – On Thursday, a long-awaited rule is set to go into effect that would restore the rights of farmers and ranchers who are harmed by a meat packing or processing company’s anti-competitive and unfair practices. Known as the GIPSA rule or the Farmer Fair Practices rule, it would clarify Read More …

Former GIPSA Head Debunks NCBA’s Lies About Premium Payments

By Dudley Butler, former GIPSA administrator I was an active member of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) for many years. I quit NCBA because its leaders began to lie to its grassroots membership and I could not stomach it any longer. Today’s NCBA leaders continue this untruthful behavior. These leaders are like Judas goats leading their members to the slaughterhouse of vertical integration. The current lies being told by NCBA leaders involve the recent interim final rule Read More …