Fairness in Livestock Competition


A farmer and his apprentice in a pasture with cows. Credit: Laura Paine

Since the 2008 Farm Bill, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has been in various stages of publishing rules known as the Grain Inspection, Packers, and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) rules. Also referred to as the “Farmer Fair Practice Rules” (FFPR), these rules gave USDA’s GIPSA (which was demoted from its own agency in 2017 and moved under USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service) the ability to enforce the Packers & Stockyards Act (P&SA).

P&SA was enacted to protect livestock and poultry growers from abuse by meatpacking and processing companies, such as treatment that unfairly benefits certain growers over other and retaliation. While there has been some success in establishing the GIPSA rules to enforce P&SA, progress has largely been blocked by congressional tactics, presidential stalling, and agency inaction.  

Recently, USDA announced plans to release a proposed rule to address the issue of undue preference later this summer. In addition to providing detailed comments on the rule, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) is also engaging grassroots stakeholders to help us publicize and build support for this rare opportunity to restore a measure of fairness back to the livestock industry. Check out the links below to take action and learn more about this issue!

Get Involved

  • Take action by signing this petition led by NSAC members Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA and the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) in partnership with the Government Accountability Project (GAP). Let USDA know that you support a robust rule that provides much-needed protections for growers!

Learn More

NSAC is proud to partner with and support the efforts of RAFI-USA and OCM to ensure the forthcoming USDA proposed rule includes adequate protection for livestock growers from corporate abuse.