ASI Joins Group Supporting Dealer Trust
June 15, 2018

The American Sheep Industry Association joined other livestock and agriculture groups this week in a letter to Sen. James Inhofe (Okla.) in support of his efforts to establish a Dealer Trust.

"A Dealer Trust is a practical solution to a problem facing livestock producers and markets across the United States," read the letter. "A Dealer Trust would correct a fundamental unfairness in current law where the farmers and ranchers who produce livestock and their sales agents are left unpaid in the event of a livestock dealer default.

"Unfortunately, we have seen a pattern of livestock dealer payment defaults. In these situations, sellers are left financially devastated. Although dealer bonds under P&S Act are designed to protect sellers in the event of a dealer default, bond payments average less than 15 cents on the dollar. At the same time, significantly increasing these bond amounts could push many dealers out of business.

"The creation of a Dealer Trust would greatly improve financial recovery in the event of a dealer default by giving unpaid sellers of livestock first priority in livestock and proceeds/receivables from livestock already resold. After all, it is only fair that the farmers and ranchers who produced the livestock, or the auction market who already paid these producers, be first in line in these situations."

The letter was signed by the American Farm Bureau Federation, ASI, the Livestock Marketing Association, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and the United States Cattlemen's Association.