With the U.S. Senate's final passage of H.R. 3408, legislation that passed the U.S. House of Representatives last year will now effectively reauthorize Mandatory Price Reporting (MPR) for four more years, through Sept. 30, 2010.

"This reporting process is important to U.S. cattle ranchers, and since the mandatory law expired last fall, we have been working diligently to urge its renewal," explains National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) president Mike John.

MPR requires meat packers to report to the USDA Ag Marketing Service (AMS) daily price and volume info on negotiated and non-negotiated purchases of cattle and boxed-beef sales. In addition, companies are also required to report beef exports and imports. The MPR law expired Sept. 30, 2005, after the Senate was initially unable to agree to the bill passed by the House.

"Back in the 1990s, we worked with other industry groups and government officials to develop a consensus and assure that producers are provided with complete, accurate and timely market info," explains Jay Truitt, NCBA vice president of government affairs.

"We're pleased the Senate made a move last night to pass this legislation and make price reporting mandatory once again," says John. "We will also continue to work with USDA to improve the MPR, so that it will better serve the needs of all cattle producers."

Mandatory price reporting originally went into effect in April 2001. The reports are online at the AMS Web site, www.ams.usda.gov/LSMNpubs/index.htm.
-- Clint Peck