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Agricultural News

Ron Hays Talks Beef Packer and Beef Checkoff Lawsuits with Bill Bullard, the CEO of the Group Bringing the Challenges

Thu, 18 Jul 2019 05:51:06 CDT

In this Ag Perspectives Podcast, we talk litigation with the CEO of R-CALF USA, Bill Bullard. Since the cattle group formed twenty years ago, it seems like they have always had a lawsuit going over a variety of issues. Currently, they have two massive lawsuits they are pursuing- and Bullard talked with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays about both of them when he was in Oklahoma in recent days.

Hays and Bullard first talk about the lawsuit filed in April 2019 by the cattle group against the four major Beef Packers in the US- alleging that the nationís four largest beef packers have unlawfully depressed fed cattle prices from 2015 onwards. The suit alleges the nationís four largest beef packers violated U.S. antitrust laws, the Packers and Stockyards Act, and the Commodity Exchange Act by unlawfully depressing the prices paid to American ranchers. Bullard explains the most recent move to consolidate several of what he calls "copy cat" lawsuits with the R-CALF litigation- and offers his thoughts on the time line ahead for this legal move.

They also discuss the ongoing litigation seeking to disrupt the operation of the Beef Checkoff in 15 states. This lawsuit contends that in each of the 15 states, the state beef councils are private corporations that have been keeping half of all the mandatory beef checkoff assessments collected within their states to fund their private speech. The group is challenging this practice on the grounds that the First Amendment prohibits the government from compelling cattle producers and other citizens to subsidize private speech. Again, Bullard offers what has happened to date- and the timeline he sees going forward in the courts on this legal front.

Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to this conversation- they discuss the lawsuit against the packers first, then starting at about the 7:47 mark- Bullard turns to the Checkoff challenge.



Ron Hays talks with Bill Bullard of RCALF on their Packer and Beef Checkoff Lawsuits
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