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Farmers Union Talks Fair Markets

Federal lawmakers and agencies heard directly from Montanans about what’s impacting their farms and ranches during National Farmers Union’s 2022 Fall Legislative Fly-In held Sept. 11-14 at the nation’s capitol.

Fourteen members of Montana Farmers Union joined with more than 250 other producers from around the country for the event that featured briefings with the White House, the USDA and FTC, as well as in-person meetings with members of Congress.

Attendees shared priorities related to NFU’s Fairness for Farmers Campaign, which launched last September and advocates for increased fairness and competition in agriculture markets. Priorities members shared with lawmakers included: support for the Meat and Poultry Special Investigator Act, the Cattle Price Discovery and Transparency Act, the American Beef Labeling Act, rulemaking by the USDA to strengthen the Packers and Stockyards Act, and support for right to repair legislation.

Issues supported by the organization today have roots in the early days of the Farmers Union, when farmers formed the group as a means of advocating for fair market access.

Next year marks a revamping of the Farm Bill, and producers and lawmakers already are talking about priorities, including strengthening the farm safety net, building upon conservation programs, and expanding and enhancing permanent disaster programs. MFU members were able to share those and other priorities for a strong Farm Bill during the Fly-In.

“After this week I am extremely proud to be a Farmers Union member,” MFU president Walter Schweitzer remarked. “We are being heard and there is hope that we can force the corporate monopolies to play fairly in the marketplace.”

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