The Roundup -

A Steak in Ag

A Monthly Report by R-CALF USA


R-CALF USA may be defined as a non-profit producer organization, but our work benefits anyone who eats meat and lives in an economy that includes agriculture. We’re more than a producer organization; we’re your organization!

R-CALF USA Shares 100-Day Strategy with 1,200 Ranchers in Dakotas who attended one of six meetings held in November. This plan was also recently submitted to the Trump Transition Team. Herman Schumacher, the group’s co-founder organized the meetings.

The largest turnout was Aberdeen, where more than 400 cattle producers watched R-CALF USA’s presentation, “Making the U.S. Cattle Industry Great Again.” Attendees stayed an additional hour to ask questions and learn more about the plan to fix the industry’s broken markets.

“The huge turnouts indicate that cattle ranchers are fed up with their marketplace that collapsed even while supply and demand forces were promising much higher prices,” said Schumacher.

“What other industry in the U.S. suffers a 50 percent price collapse when supplies increase by no more than two percent?” Schumacher asked rhetorically.

R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard’s presentation showed that the U.S. cattle industry is in sharp decline – shrinking in terms of participants, herd size, and beef output. He said the cattle industry is the last frontier for multinational meatpackers because it’s the only remaining animal industry the meatpackers have not already vertically integrated from birth to plate.

The group’s plan calls for restoring and then preserving marketplace competition. It asks the Trump Administration to provide producers the tools they need to compete in their domestic market and to take from monopolistic meatpackers the tools they use to manipulate and distort competitive market forces. R-CALF USA articulated five urgent tasks for the new administration:

Reinstate mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for beef so U.S. ranchers can compete against the growing tide of foreign beef imported into their domestic market.

Empower producers to monitor and enforce the rules of competition by finalizing the 2010 GIPSA rules that will finally implement the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921.

Enforce antitrust laws to stop packers from using their market power to exploit cattle producers on one end of the supply chain and consumers on the other.

Protect the cattle industry’s price discovery market by banning packer ownership of livestock and cattle contracts that do not contain a negotiated price.

Pass smart trade policy to reverse the industry’s trade deficit and require that only beef from cattle born, raised and processed in the U.S. can bear a USA label when exported.

A live recording of Bullard’s presentation is available for viewing on the R-CALF USA Facebook page. Both Bullard’s full presentation and R-CALF USA’s complete comprehensive plan are available at

For additional information on any of the topics mentioned, please visit

R-CALF USA is funded solely by donations and membership dues. Please consider becoming a member and giving a donation. For more info or to join, go to, 406-252-2516.


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