THE COMPETITION AND ANTITRUST LAW ENFORCEMENT REFORM ACT
Pittsboro, NC [February 8, 2021] — Rural Advancement Foundation International – USA (RAFI-USA) supports Senator Amy Klobuchar’s omnibus bill, The Competition and Antitrust Law Enforcement Reform Act, which she introduced last week.
Edna Rodriguez, Executive Director of RAFI-USA, said, “We are grateful to Senator Klobuchar and co-sponsors Senators Markey, Booker, Blumenthal, and Schatz for this proposed legislation. This bill will benefit rural people, farmers, and independent business owners alike.”
For far too long, antitrust law in the United States has not kept pace with developments in our economy, creating unchecked growth in market consolidation and concentration. For farmers and rural small businesses this means there are far too few companies selling seeds, only one poultry company in town, and farmers who are legally locked out of repairing their own tractors. Rural prosperity has withered on the vine as monopolies and monopsonies reap all the financial benefits of industry consolidation and vertical integration. This legislation is a lifeline to America’s rural communities.
However, more action is necessary to undo all the harm caused by unchecked mergers in the agricultural sector. Additional legislation is needed to roll back the excessive mergers in the livestock and poultry sector, the seed market, and farm equipment companies. Excessive mergers hinder farmer innovation as they rob small rural businesses of opportunities to compete, and drive up the price of farm inputs. As we face society-wide problems, strong antitrust enforcement will be a vital tool to re-establish a fair playing field. Sen. Klobuchar’s bill is a strong start in giving those tools back to farmers.
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