The USDA released a package of rules and orders seeking to increase competition in the livestock industry. That package establishes a Chief Competition Officer at USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). This position will be hired as a career rather than a political appointment. The officer will help elevate and institutionalize competition-related concerns at USDA.
After that announcement, U.S. Cattlemen’s Association President Justin Tupper put out a release saying, “This announcement is another item crossed off a to-do list the administration is following to ensure a fairer, more competitive marketplace for U.S. cattle producers.”
The package also updates AMS Institutional Meat Purchase Specifications (IMPS) that large volume buyers like federal, state, and local government agencies, schools, restaurants, hotels, and other food service users follow when buying meat products. Currently, meat and meat products do have to be of domestic origin, but the updated standards will specify that to mean only animals that are born, raised, and slaughtered in the U.S.
(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters)