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Source: North American Meat Institute news release

Washington, D.C. - In response to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack's request for comments on efforts to improve supply chains for the production of agricultural commodities and food products, The North American Meat Institute (Meat Institute) today said the meat and poultry food supply chain remains resilient despite extraordinary circumstances.

"The pandemic that began in 2020 and continues today may be the ultimate black swan event," said Meat Institute Senior Vice President for Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Mark Dopp. "But its occurrence does not automatically mean the system needs to be torn down and rebuilt."

The following are topics discussed in the remarks:

Americans spend less of their disposable personal income on food than any other country in the world;

Rhetoric about increasing concentration in the beef industry does not match reality, which is that the United States fed cattle market has had four firms operating in the space for more than 25 years;

The factors with the greatest effect on markets are livestock inventory and the ability of packers to utilize their capacity; and

Efforts to increase capacity through government intervention are shortsighted.

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