NFU Opposed to Proposed Acquisition of Smithfield Foods

National Farmers Union opposes the purchase of Smithfield by the Chinese company Shaunghui. With the news of the proposed acquisition - NFU President Roger Johnson says it's worth considering the impact of increased consolidation of agricultural markets. In one fell swoop - Johnson says 26-percent of U.S. pork processing and 15-percent of domestic hog production will be controlled by a foreign company. He says it's likely the U.S. pork market will feel additional downward pressure in prices as Smithfield seeks to supply the Chinese market with cheap pork. According to Johnson - consolidation in agricultural markets makes it easier for interests in other countries to control large portions of our food supply. He says further study and understanding of concentration of markets is needed - along with enhanced enforcement of anti-trust laws. Johnson says independent family farmers and ranchers can't succeed in the absence of protection from unfair, anti-competitive business practices by those who control the marketplace.

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