Livestock Mandatory Reporting Study Available / Meeting Set

September 16, 2016

Through the Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting program, more than a million livestock producers, hundreds of meat processors, some 37,000 retail food outlets, more than 1 million restaurants, as well as meat exporters and many other stakeholders received critical data and market intelligence on a daily basis, posted Craig Morris, deputy administrator of the Agricultural Marketing Service's Livestock, Poultry and Seed Program.

LMR encourages competition in the marketplace by vastly improving price and supply data, bringing transparency, breadth and depth to market reporting. Through LMR, livestock producers and processors, retail food outlets, restaurants, exporters and many other stakeholders receive critical market intelligence on a daily basis. Literally thousands of business transactions every day rest on the outcome of LMR data.

LMR gets its authority through the Livestock Mandatory Reporting Act of 1999, which must be reauthorized by Congress every five years. The 2015 reauthorization required AMS to conduct a comprehensive study of LMR due to Congress by March 1, 2018.

In the first step of this process, AMS commissioned a baseline "as is" study of the livestock and meat industry and LMR. The recently completed report, Baseline Study of Livestock and Meat Marketing Trends and Implications for Livestock Mandatory Reporting, is available at www.ams.usda.gov/sites/default/files/media/BaselineStudyLivestockMeatMarketingTrendsLMR.PDF.

Since enactment of the 1999 Act, major changes have occurred in the livestock and meat industry. The baseline study identified several trends in how livestock and meat production and markets have evolved. For instance, in the past 15 years, packers have become larger, more concentrated and more vertically integrated. Also, the industry has made major investments to improve supply chain management, and the use of LMR information has expanded beyond price discovery. Additionally, consumer preferences have changed, and packers are marketing a wider variety of value-added and specialty products to meet consumer demand.

The second part of the process has AMS inviting industry representatives from national livestock and meat trade associations and organizations to participate in a series of stakeholder meetings to discuss the marketing methods, the current challenges with reporting livestock and meat markets and the needs of the industry regarding future revisions to LMR. The goal of these meetings is to reach consensus on what each commodity area needs changed in the 2020 reauthorization.

The American Sheep Industry Association will participate in this meeting, which has been scheduled for Nov. 15-16 in Washington, D.C.