U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) introduced the Strengthening Antitrust Enforcement for Meatpacking Act. The legislation aims to empower antitrust enforcers to dismantle large meatpacking and poultry monopolies and restore power to Missouri’s farmers and workers. The bill’s introduction follows an announcement from Tyson Foods that it will close its poultry plants in southern Missouri, resulting in the loss of more than 2,000 jobs.
“Today’s meatpacking monopolies are generating enormous profits while stifling competition,” said Senator Hawley. “Congress must equip antitrust prosecutors with the tools to end anti-competitive behavior without protracted court battles. It’s time to hold these monopolies accountable and empower our farmers.”
The Strengthening Antitrust Enforcement for Meatpacking Act proposes to:
- Amend the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921 to establish specific thresholds for market concentration. This will enable federal antitrust authorities to more effectively prohibit or unwind acquisitions that further concentrate the meatpacking sector.
- Deter additional meatpacking concentration by discouraging entrenched meatpacking interests from acquiring more competitors.
- Restore more power to the hands of farmers and workers.
Read the full bill text here.