July 15, 2004
July 15, 2004 -- Reauthorization of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Mandatory Price Reporting (MPR) system is a top priority of the U.S. sheep industry.
"Reauthorization of MPR by this current Congress is crucial if the U.S. Department of Agriculture is to continue collecting and reporting the price data, on which our industry so heavily relies," says American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) Executive Director Peter Orwick.
More than 40 U.S. sheep industry leaders recently addressed the issue with federal policy makers during the annual ASI Spring Trip to Washington, D.C. in late April.
Reporting of sheep and lambs is authorized in the statute. However, "all the details are by regulation, so the industry is not seeking any legislative changes to the system, but rather just reauthorization," adds Orwick.
USDA officials are working with U.S. sheep industry representatives regarding updates to the current system. In fact, Orwick says another update is due for final publication this summer.
"The update involves the collection of wholesale price data on imported lamb products for the first time, and represents a fair deal for the industry," says Orwick. "Domestic lamb firms incur expenses for MPR, and so therefore should firms handling imported product."
The National Pork Producers Council announced in late May its full support for a one-year extension of the provision Livestock Mandatory Reporting Act, set to expire Oct. 30, 2004.