Cows

Several senators have reintroduced legislation in the U.S. Senate aiming to increase competition and transparency in the cattle market, thereby benefiting the nation’s small, independent beef producers.

Last week, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), alongside Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Joni Ernst (R-IA), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), reintroduced 50/14 legislation. The bill aims to increase competition and transparency in the fed cattle market by requiring packers to procure a fraction of their cattle in the cash market.

“The Iowa Cattlemen’s Association is pleased to support the reintroduction of the legislation that sparked discussion on cattle market reform in 2020: 50/14. Our producer members have continually expressed that all participants in the fed cattle market share responsibility in providing price discovery and transparency. This legislation better balances the distribution of responsibility across U.S. fed cattle inventories. To make informed decisions, buyers and sellers must have access to more reportable market data. With two bills on the table and a dialogue set to recommence, now is the time to work together to negotiate the best possible solution for the cattle industry,” Matt Deppe, CEO of Iowa Cattlemen’s Association said.

Since the introduction of Sen. Grassley’s bill last May, the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association witnessed a groundswell of support for cattle market reform in Iowa and throughout the beef belt. “The support for this initiative doesn’t stop at our gates—it extends all the way to the halls of Hart in Washington D.C.,” said Deppe. “The bill has a tally of eight bipartisan cosponsors in the Senate.”

Looking ahead, Deppe said the Cattlemen welcome the opportunity to work together with legislators and industry stakeholders to develop the best possible solution for the cattle industry. “With two bills reintroduced and the clock ticking on Livestock Mandatory Reporting reauthorization, the time to act is now,” he said. “The Iowa Cattlemen’s Association, once again, calls for a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing centered on cattle market reform.”

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About the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association: The Iowa Cattlemen’s Association represents nearly 9,000 beef-producing families and associated companies dedicated to the future of Iowa’s beef industry. ICA’s mission is “Grow Iowa’s beef business through advocacy, leadership and education.” www.iacattlemen.org.