WASHINGTON – On Dec. 8, Congress passed an extension on Live Mandatory Reporting (LMR) to make cattle markets more transparent to producers. By a vote of 418-9, the House advanced H.R. 5290 introduced by David Scott (D-Ga.), House Agriculture Committee Chairman. Glenn Thompson (R-Pa.) supported the approved legislation through Sept. 30, 2022. The authorization for LMR was currently set to expire along with federal funding on Feb. 18, 2022.
“The fact that House Agriculture Committee Chairman Scott and Ranking Member Thompson have both been vocal champions for LMR reauthorization is yet another indication of the broad-base support this measure has among producers across the country,” said Jerry Bohn, president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). “LMR is absolutely essential to fair, competitive, and transparent cattle markets. We appreciate Chairman Scott’s leadership, and the heavy engagement we have seen from both sides of the committee on this issue.”
In June 2021, NCBA wrote a letter urging Congress to reauthorize LMR. NCBA’s letter had the support of over 36 state affiliate groups and asked for a mandate to require large meat processors to regularly report information on their transactions, such as the price they pay for livestock and the volume of purchases.
The NCBA pushed the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to make more market data available to the public resulting in a new daily report on the foundational prices used in cattle market formulas, grids, and contracts, and a new weekly report on the volume of cattle purchased at each different level of pricing. Then in October of the same year, Todd Wilkinson, vice president of the NCBA, testified before the House Agriculture Committee and stressed the need for greater transparency in live cattle markets.