Senator Chuck Grassley and three other Senators say they have developed a compromise plan that give independent cattle producers more clues about what meatpackers are paying for cattle raised under private contracts.
“One step closer, a big step closer to making that happen,” Grassley says.
Grassley, along with a Republican senator from Nebraska and Democratic senators from Montana and Oregon are co-sponsors of the legislation. It would create a sort of library of sale contracts and require meat packers to disclose how many cattle they plan to buy for slaughter in each of the next 14 days. Grassley says the aim now is to tack this proposal onto an already-existing livestock-related law that congress has to vote to reauthorize in December.
“The next month will be critical as we talk to the leadership of the agriculture committees in both the House and Senate to get this bill included,” Grassley says.
According to Grassley, a key GOP senator who had blocked action on the issue in the past retired from the senate a year ago and leaders of the House and Senate ag committees appear open to negotiations.
“Producers across the country are counting on congress to make real reform to the cattle market,” Grassley says.
Cattle producers have complained there’s a growing disparity between what they’re being paid for their livestock and what consumers are paying for beef at the grocery store.