AUSTIN, Texas — On May 7, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General William Barr asking him to investigate the potential of beef industry price fixing involving meat packers in the United States. The letter dated May 7, 2020, asks General Barr to probe beef pricing processes in the U.S. beef industry with a goal of protecting Texas farmers and ranchers.
“Texas farmers and ranchers, our nation’s largest beef producers, are facing financial devastation due to low live beef prices when retail prices of beef are at an all-time high,” Miller said. “Something is wrong, and it has nothing to do with the COVID-19 virus. I want to get to the bottom of it.”
In the letter, Miller explains that the complicated and risky process of bringing cattle to the beef market lead to opportunities for price-fixing that harms not only the farmers and ranchers, but also the Texas consumer.
“This is not just about protecting Texas’ farmers and ranchers,” Miller said. “This is a Texas consumer protection issue. In the midst of a beef shortage, Texas consumers need to know the beef industry is protected, fair and well regulated. Now more than ever.”
Similarly, he sent a letter to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton yesterday asking him to join a growing list of Attorneys General from western ag states in petitioning U.S. Attorney General William Barr to investigate this issue on a federal level.
The letter to General Barr can be read in its entirety here
The letter to General Paxton can be read here
— Texas Department of Agriculture