America’s agricultural industry is dominated by a small number of extremely powerful corporations; their excessive market consolidation leads to unfair competition that is bad for rural communities, our political system, consumer prices, innovation, farmers, workers, and small and independent businesses. 

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC)—the federal agency that has helped enforce federal antitrust law since 1914—has proposed new premerger disclosure requirements that will protect against unfair competition and market consolidation by ensuring the agency has sufficient information to understand and address the potentially anticompetitive effects of proposed mergers in the modern economy. 

The proposed premerger disclosure requirements—the first proposed update since their implementation 45 years ago—include more information about the competitive landscape in which the proposed merger is taking place; information about the relevant entities’ histories of acquiring other companies; and detailed records about the strategic rationale for the mergers.

Democracy Forward represented Farm Action, a farmer-led advocacy organization dedicated to building a food and farming system that works for all Americans in preparing a comment to the FTC in support of their proposed updates to the premerger notification requirements. 

We previously supported Farm Action in submitting a comment to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS)—a sub-agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)—in response to AMS’s notice of proposed rulemaking and request for public comments regarding inclusive competition and market integrity under the Packers and Stockyards Act.