Farmers across Iowa and the United States are the backbone of this country and our economy. That is why I am proud to join in celebrating May as National Beef Month. Farmers and ranchers across the country strive to produce the highest quality of beef by providing care and nutrition for their cattle.
The cattle industry is one of Iowa’s top economic exports bringing over three billion dollars a year in revenue to our state and our farmers. This revenue provides living wages to our farmers and brings jobs and businesses to Iowa. In recent years lawmakers have started to propose harmful regulations affecting the cattle industry.
In Iowa, farming is more than a job, it is a way of life that is often passed down through generations of hardworking families. I have been lucky enough to hear from producers across the state and understand their plight about the harsh regulations that were proposed.
Since I took office in 2021, I have consistently fought to support our farmers. I joined the rest of the Iowa delegation in a letter to Secretary Vilsack seeking to include cattle feeders in the renewed payments implemented by the United States Department of Agriculture’s COVID-19 relief programs.
Additionally, I have consistently urged the Department of Justice to continue its investigation into the four biggest meatpackers, after being suspected of anticompetitive practices. This will ensure that small family beef farmers have fair and transparent markets for the commodities that they produce.
I also introduced the Meat Packing Special Investigator Act, bipartisan and bicameral legislation that would ensure that our current anticompetitive and antitrust laws are enforced by the government. This will do a lot of good to protect our national security, shore up the American food supply, and support Iowa’s farmers, ranchers, and producers.
I worked with my colleagues to introduce H.R. 5609, the Cattle Contract Library Act. This legislation would create a library for cattle contracts within the United States Department of Agriculture’s Agriculture Marketing Service Department. This will increase transparency in our cattle market benefiting both producers and consumers. Businesses in the cattle industry need access to the most accurate information to make the best decisions for their business.
Throughout National Beef Month I will continue to advocate for family farmers in Congress and encourage support for Iowa’s family farmers!