The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced it will eliminate the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration as a standalone agency. USDA will consolidate the GIPSA functions into the Agricultural Marketing Service. National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson said the timing of this announcement doesn’t benefit family farmers.
“At a time when just a handful of companies control all of the markets that supply and buy from family farmers and ranchers, the elimination of GIPSA is a big step in the wrong direction,” says Johnson. “The agency’s statutory duty is to ensure fair and competitive markets for family farmers.”
Johnson adds that this decision comes on top of USDA’s decision to withdraw the Farmer Fair Practices Rules, which would have given American family farmers the most basic protections against abusive and undue practices levied against them by companies that hold substantial market power.
“Farmers Union strongly encourages USDA to reconsider both of these decisions that undermine competition and place family farmers and ranchers at a significant disadvantage in the marketplace,” says Johnson.