Today, from meat to beer to seeds, the food industry is highly consolidated. The removal of a long-standing ownership structure, one that distributed profit and opportunity across America’s landscape, means that now, most land and most animals are now cared for by corporations, not by individuals.
Open Markets Food & Power reporter Claire Kelloway covers how after U.S. and Chinese trade officials reached a deal to lift China’s five-year ban on U.S. poultry imports, the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) submitted a final rule permitting China to export chicken to the U.S. from birds raised and slaughtered in China for the first time in the agency’s history. She argues that the only clear winners in this grand bargain are multinational meatpackers that can profit from selling the lowest cost poultry, no matter where it came from.
A a coalition of students, farmers, ranchers, fishers, and food workers rallied outside the Philadelphia headquarters of cafeteria operator, Aramark, to demand the corporation invest in more just and sustainable food systems. Open Markets’ Researcher and Reporter Claire Kelloway spotlights their campaign targeting a system of contracts and kickbacks between dominant food corporations and the three largest food service management companies, Aramark, Sodexo, and Compass Group.
Open Markets’ Food & Power reporter Claire Kelloway reports on the “Stop the Stealin'” rally where nearly 500 cattle producers from 14 states rallied in Omaha, Nebraska to denounce corporate control over cattle markets and to demand that the Trump administration do something to fix it. She also covers developments in the Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund (R-CALF)’s case for why beef checkoff funds should not go to private entities without ranchers’ consent. Here’s her latest on Food & Power.
The below is a statement from Claire Kelloway, Reporter & Researcher at Open Markets Institute, regarding Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue’s comment “In America, the big get bigger and the small go out.”
In her latest issue of Food & Power, Open Markets Researcher and Reporter Claire Kelloway reports on a lesser-known policy shift around the turn of the millennium helped create our current system of high-stress large-scale contract tobacco farming. She reports that today, corporations dictate many aspects of farmers’ operations through contracts, including what type of plants to grow, how to harvest them, and how much water and chemicals to apply.
Open Markets filed an amicus brief in support of thousands of immigrant shepherds who allege they are the victims of a cartel among ranchers in the Western United States. The shepherds – here on a guest worker program from Peru – in 2015 sued the ranchers and their associations for colluding to suppress their wages.
The Open Markets Institute filed a comment to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) exposing how manufacturers - of everything from cellphones to tractors – monopolize markets for parts and service, shutting out independent technicians, driving up repair costs, and sending more goods to landfills.