On May 18, the House Agriculture Committee approved H.R. 7606, the Meat and Poultry Special Investigator Act of 2022.

The bill directs coordination between the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. It grants subpoena power to aid in the investigation and prosecution of violators of the Packers & Stockyards Act, and bolsters the legal power of the USDA by maintaining a staff of attorneys and other professionals with relevant expertise that can elevate cases of corruption. 

U.S. Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) President Brooke Miller issued the following statement: 

“While packer-allied groups blast this bill for its overreaching authority, that is precisely the reason for which the U.S. Cattlemen’s Association supports the Special Investigator act. It seeks to provide resources to enforce the rule of law.

“For far too long, the U.S. cattle marketplace has lacked a referee on the playing field. The role of the federal government is to blow the whistle an any illegal, anticompetitive, or deceptive market activity. This bill would give several federal agencies the authority to act cooperatively to pursue multinational corporations who fail to live up to our American values.

“I’d like to specifically thank the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Abigail Spanberger of my home state of Virginia, for her unwavering commitment to instilling fairness in the marketplace, and Rep. Dusty Johnson for answering his constituents’ call for immediate action. USCA is especially grateful for both of their leadership on this legislation and looks forward to working with them and Senators Jon Tester of Montana, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, and Mike Rounds of South Dakota to get this bill across the finish line before the end of this Congressional session.”

Source: USCA