The National Cattlemen's Beef Association and the National Pork Producers Council held a media briefing Thursday evening before the USDA-DOJ workshop. Organizers say pork and beef producers representing more than 20 states attended the meeting to voice their opposition to the GIPSA rule, expressing the negative effect it could have on their operations.
Robbie LeValley, president of the Colorado Cattlemen's Association; a cattle producer; and a co-owner of Homestead Meats, a family owned company marketing beef locally, said their innovation and willingness to do direct marketing has basically now labeled them a packer,
"The proposed rule, as I read it, now limits our marketing options - meaning not being able to sell to other packers," LeValley said. "While some say that is not the intent of the rule, the vagueness of the language makes it very possible."
NPPC President Sam Carney, a producer from Adair, Iowa, said that as written, the GIPSA rule would limit his ability to sell hogs. He called it a solution in search of a problem.
"The markets work, and we don't need the government trying to 'fix' it," said Carney. "The GIPSA rule is overly broad and very vague. It would inject uncertainty into the market, stifle innovation and lead to less not more competition in the livestock industry."