Agriculture, and our local producers, are suffering from onerous federal regulations on our food production. This has been true for some time. Right now, the consumers are seeing the effect of that. Beef is either unavailable or extremely expensive, at the same time that producers all around us have the product that they cannot sell to their neighbors. This should not happen, and we need to use this time as an opportunity to change the federal regulations, and simultaneously pass Wyoming legislation to end this practice.
The federal government, starting with the Federal Meat Inspection Act in 1906, in effect took control of the market – away from local producers and consumers. The onerous regulations have made it so that producers have to haul cattle a long way from where it is produced, which is expensive and prohibitive. Meanwhile, they cannot sell it locally, directly to the closest consumers.
Fair market principles should be allowed to control our economies. This current crisis has highlighted that, especially in the food and agricultural industries. It is a dangerous proposition that the federal government is allowed to control our food supply. Further, it is creating problems for the producers and consumers to interact. States should be allowed to have and regulate local packers and food plants, so that food can more easily and affordably be sold to the consumer. It’s that simple.