PRICE FIXING IN THE BEEF INDUSTRY

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3waycross

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Just heard that the Biden Administration has taken the stand that the Beef Industry(feedlots, and packers, and maybe wholesalers) are price fixing. I know there's lots of people here who would agree with that assumption. Soooo what does Fox News do. They go out and talk to one of those guys instead of a farmer or rancher. REALLY?????
 

sstterry

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One of my jobs is to buy low and sell at a higher price as often as possible.
Unless they are coordinating the prices, then that is price-fixing. The Dairy Industry did it in the 90's and early 2000s and they got caught. The sad thing was, it was the farmer's own cooperative that was screwing them over, DFA.
 

jschoolcraft86

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One of my jobs is to buy low and sell at a higher price as often as possible.

I tried it the other way around and didn't last long.
Totally get your point, but are you able to call up your competitors and get them to agree to not pay more for a product or sell less? I am super conflicted about getting the government involved in anything because I totally believe they only make things worse, but if there is genuine price fixing or collusion going on that's definitely not the free market that is supposed to work for us. Of course I can't prove that the packers are doing that, I'm taking the word of Corbitt Wall from YouTube's Feeder Flash and some general economic overview material from another site I read so my understanding may be limited.

I've always heard the solution to this issue is more small time regional packing houses which makes sense to me. I would assume the biggest hurdle for this is excessive government regulation, maybe someone here can confirm?

Like I said, I don't know how to feel about this one. When in doubt I default to distrusting Biden so I'll try to temper my hopes.
 

Rmc

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It was also a accident when Tyson and others where indicted and jbs ,Tyson have paid fines and settlements totaling 100s of millions of dollars in price fixing of both pork and chicken but they would never fix prices of beef
 

TennesseeTuxedo

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Totally get your point, but are you able to call up your competitors and get them to agree to not pay more for a product or sell less? I am super conflicted about getting the government involved in anything because I totally believe they only make things worse, but if there is genuine price fixing or collusion going on that's definitely not the free market that is supposed to work for us. Of course I can't prove that the packers are doing that, I'm taking the word of Corbitt Wall from YouTube's Feeder Flash and some general economic overview material from another site I read so my understanding may be limited.

I've always heard the solution to this issue is more small time regional packing houses which makes sense to me. I would assume the biggest hurdle for this is excessive government regulation, maybe someone here can confirm?

Like I said, I don't know how to feel about this one. When in doubt I default to distrusting Biden so I'll try to temper my hopes.
I listen to Corbitt every morning. I’d like to see more competition amongst the fat cattle buyers for sure.
 

damengineer

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Years ago, there were over 20 automotive machine shops in Oklahoma City. I hung around one that was connected to one of the largest parts warehouses in the state. I worked some nights in the shop to help out the main machinist and to learn the business. One time I saw a xerox copy of a sheet listing services and prices that were about 25% higher than ours and it was stapled to an envelope with a return address of a competitor. I askedTerry what it was and he told me if I wanted to get some work done to get it in because next week was the new month and prices were going up... He then shoved the price list in the workbench drawer and that was the last I saw of it. Next week the prices were up 25%..... And that is how it is done...
 

Brute 23

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Producers have been in Washington trying to get some thing done with packer price fixing for over a 100 years. I dont have much faith this will be the year. I also dont believe producers have been fighting some thing does not exist for that long.
 

Lucky

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Easy problem for ranchers to fix. Lets all just decide that after Jan 1st 2022 we’ll PO any 850# steers under $2. Anytime you drive by a pasture with cattle leave the note on the gate.
 

SBMF 2015

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Just curious; How many of you folks that are complaining actually feed cattle for a living? Or do you just send a few fats to the local sale barn a couple times a year?
When we were running at full capacity we had a middle man that contacted buyers when we had a pot load ready. We sent cattle to five different plants; Grand Island, NE, Joslin,IL, Aurora,IL, Green bay, WI, Philadelphia, Pa. The middle man got paid $x/hd for every fat we marketed through him.
The packers will not change. This is a numbers game. If you finish 20hd a year, you don't stand a chance. But if you have 20 and your neighbor has 15, now you have a pot load. The opportunities to market your cattle just grew exponentially.
If you want changes, you as producers have to make them. Involving the Government will only create a new problem.
 

jltrent

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You can get a little more out of your cattle with marketing them right, but still a small piece of the pie compared to the retailer price. As long as there is a good supply of cattle the middle man is in control. On cattle farming it is the way it has always been, you try to watch your input cost and hopefully at years in you have an economic profit. With energy prices going up which will make fertilizer prices and everything else go up the cattle farm is going to see even a bigger uphill climb. I hate to see the old farm grow up is what keeps me going.
 

Angusjohn

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No companies would ever get together on prices. It's just an accident that when gas goes up a nickel that it happens at every location no matter the trucking costs or anything else. Just an accident.
No, of course not! My day job is as a banker; one of our board members owned a gas / oil distributor ship. He would come to meetings and announce, “better fill up on your way home, gas price is going up tomorrow.“ He never missed!
 

sim.-ang.king

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Just curious; How many of you folks that are complaining actually feed cattle for a living? Or do you just send a few fats to the local sale barn a couple times a year?
When we were running at full capacity we had a middle man that contacted buyers when we had a pot load ready. We sent cattle to five different plants; Grand Island, NE, Joslin,IL, Aurora,IL, Green bay, WI, Philadelphia, Pa. The middle man got paid $x/hd for every fat we marketed through him.
The packers will not change. This is a numbers game. If you finish 20hd a year, you don't stand a chance. But if you have 20 and your neighbor has 15, now you have a pot load. The opportunities to market your cattle just grew exponentially.
If you want changes, you as producers have to make them. Involving the Government will only create a new problem.
That's great and all, but the lot selling 20000 head is getting screwed the same as a 20 head lot.
We have laws in this country, and it's the job of the government to enforce them, but right now crony capitalism is in control. Only way to fix that is to get rid of the cronyism.
 

shaz

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I there's collusion we probably can't prove it unless some disgruntled managers squeal.

We CAN cut supply however.
 

J+ Cattle

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It was also a accident when Tyson and others where indicted and jbs ,Tyson have paid fines and settlements totaling 100s of millions of dollars in price fixing of both pork and chicken but they would never fix prices of beef
Whenever they get caught with their hand in the cookie jar they may pay a fine but they make sure all of the press announcements say that "they admit no wrong doing". The fine is just a cost of doing business to them, it's passed along to the consumers and it's a drop in the bucket compared to the amount of money they make manipulating prices.
 

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