Letter to the editor
August 20, 2010
Facts must be tough to come by in R-Calf’s Billings office these days. Perhaps this is why they have seemingly appointed themselves spokesmen for U.S. Premium Beef (USPB), National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), American Meat Institute (AMI), and National Meat Association (NMA).
Recently, USPB sent a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack asking him to dismiss R-Calf claims about the Grain Inspection Packers and Stockyards Act (GIPSA) proposed rule on USPB:
“We recently became aware of a communication sent to Administrator Butler dated July 28, 2010, from R-Calf USA (R-Calf), regarding the effect of the proposed GIPSA Rule (published in the Federal Register on June 22, 2010) on U.S. Premium Beef, LLC (USPB) and its unitholders and associates. As a third party organization, independent of USPB, R-Calf does not speak for USPB or its unitholders and associates.”
Now in an R-Calf press release printed on page A7 of the August 14, 2010 issue of this paper, they are bemoaning the fact NCBA, AMI, and NMA declined to participate in a GIPSA rule debate forum on KSDZ radio in Gordon, NE on Aug. 9. It doesn’t take much of a rocket scientist to determine why. In reading the comments attributed the station owner/manager; it quickly became obvious he is very sympathetic to R-Calf’s point of view. It appears those who declined participation in the forum did their homework and concluded it would be deeply biased in favor of R-Calf.
Attacks on NCBA, AMI and NMA are nothing new, only diversionary tactics aimed at dividing cattle producers on important issues. Rather than focusing on the facts surrounding these issues the detractors of NCBA have resorted to attacking the organization and insinuating NCBA is not representing its members.
NCBA members have given their staff and leadership marching orders and that is to protect our cattle marketing options, which are threatened by the proposed rule. You can be certain NCBA members are fully engaged in discussions regarding the GIPSA rule and will participate in the competition hearing in Ft. Collins on Aug. 27 where I expect there will be an impartial moderator.
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Midland, SD 57552