WASHINGTON – June 18, 2010 — The National Chicken Council released the following comment today on the rule proposed by the Grain Inspection, Packers & Stockyards Administration.
NCC will review the draft regulation carefully and make appropriate comments. However, the regulation appears to be one-sided, unrealistic, and not in accordance with court rulings. The likely result will be years of litigation and uncertainty as companies, growers and the government try to sort out the impact on what has been an efficient system for producing an agricultural commodity.
• USDA’s statement that the average chicken company “makes $3.23 a bird” is grossly misleading since that figure is an approximate wholesale value and not the profit, which is only a small percentage of that amount.
• The regulation was clearly drafted to satisfy a small number of activist growers and will do nothing to enhance the business of the great majority of broiler producers who are satisfied with the current system.
• Eight different U.S. circuit courts of appeal have ruled that the Packers and Stockyard Act requires a showing of harm to competition. USDA’s outline of the new rule specifically welcomes yet more litigation by calling for “judicial reexamination of this issue.”
This proposed regulation is not in the best interests of poultry producers, companies, or consumers.
The National Chicken Council represents integrated chicken producer-processors, the companies that produce and process chickens. Member companies of NCC account for approximately 95 percent of the chicken sold in the United States.