R-CALF USA is urging USDA's Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration to resist efforts to extend the public comment period on the proposed rule on livestock marketing. The National Cattlemen's Beef Association, American Meat Institute and National Pork Producers Council are requesting a 120-day extension beyond the Aug. 23 deadline, which would delay an opportunity to publish the final rule until next year. R-CALF says a delay is unwarranted because the organizations are only stating the same objections they did in 2001, which R-CALF CEO Bill Bullard says indicates the likelihood the groups merely seek a delay in any new regulations that would limit any marketing practices of meatpackers.
Bullard says livestock producers already have been denied the congressionally mandated reforms and regulations required by the 2008 Farm Bill for over two years and shouldn't be subjected to any further delays in the regulatory rulemaking process. Bullard says GIPSA shouldn't facilitate an undue delay to groups that already have signaled contempt for any competition-related reforms because it would be detrimental to the interests of hundreds of thousands of U.S. livestock producers and poultry producers who continue to experience those profound problems in the marketing of their livestock and poultry.