Nebraska rancher says White House plan likely to have little impact on her operation

Nebraska rancher Jaclyn Wilson says the Biden administration’s plan to increase competition and transparency in the cattle industry will have little impact on her operation. “You can talk a big talk, but I guess you kind of need to back it up too and it’s going to be interesting to see how they back it up besides handing money out.”

The Action Plan for a Fairer, More Competitive, and More Resilient Meat and Poultry Supply Chain will have $1 billion to expand independent processing capacity.

Wilson, who runs a cow/calf operation and small feedlot in the state’s Sandhills, tells Brownfield “An increase in supply capacity would be great, but an increase doesn’t do any good unless you have people to fabricate the product,” Wilson says. “I think that is where I’m more concerned at right now is definitely labor.”

She says leveling the playing field between producers and processors is complex because packers must pay for transportation costs and manage labor concerns. “Our little local packer – our USDA Packer – we’re paying him over $1100 per head for a small packing plant and that’s not one of the big four. I understand that the packers are making a profit right now.”

The administration’s plan includes four strategies for creating a more competitive, fair, resilient meat and poultry sector, with better earnings for producers and more choices and affordable prices for consumers.

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