National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson issued the following statement in response to the announcement that the Department of Justice has approved the Tyson-Hillshire merger:
“Anti-trust laws were put on the books to keep powerful industries – like the meat industry – from being overly consolidated. Yet nearly every merger request they file is approved by the Department of Justice. As a result, the meat industry grows more powerful by the day and the family farmer continues to get squeezed.
“This is because farmers are price takers not price makers, and when the number of buyers is decreased, the sales options left to farmers and ranchers are fewer and fewer and the ability of the buyers to dictate prices to producers continues to increase. The top four meat packers already control 80 percent of the market and now that number has just gone up.
“Once again, the Department of Justice has turned its back on family farmers.”