ST. PAUL, MINN. — On Aug. 8, a bipartisan coalition of 10 attorneys general led by Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison publicly commented in support of the proposed rule: Transparency in Poultry Grower Contracting Tournaments.

The initiative is the first of many to be proposed by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to strengthen enforcement of the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921. It would require poultry companies and live poultry dealers to provide necessary documentation for contract producers.

“I pulled together this bipartisan coalition of attorneys general to support the USDA’s proposed rule because we all agree that more transparency is a good thing that will lead to better outcomes for the farmers that feed us all,” Ellison said.

The coalition believes the rule would allow for smaller operations to compete for fair pricing terms from larger processors.

“One of the many reasons it’s tough for small poultry farmers — and small farmers of all kinds — to afford their lives is because of imbalances of power, money and information between farmers and processors,” Ellison said. “These imbalances lead to unfair competition and bad outcomes not only for these farmers, but for their communities and way of life, and ultimately for all Minnesotans.