Grassley: Justice Department, FTC, USDA to Collaborate on Proposed Ag Mergers
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa released the following statement after receiving responses from both the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission that they would be collaborating with each other and the Department of Agriculture, where appropriate, regarding their work to analyze proposed mergers in the seed and agrochemical industries. In its letter to Grassley, the Justice Department said, “The Department will coordinate and collaborate with the Department of Agriculture and the Federal Trade Commission, as appropriate, on the impact of this and other proposed mergers in the agricultural sector.”
On Tuesday, Sept. 20, Grassley is holding a hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee on the consolidation and competition within the seed and agrochemical industry.
“Iowa farmers are concerned about rising input prices in a struggling agriculture economy that doesn’t look to be turning around anytime soon. Commodity prices are already at or below the cost of production. The consolidation trend we’re seeing in the seed and agrochemical industries has all of us concerned that less competition will mean increased prices for seeds, chemicals and fertilizers for farmers. The pledge from the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission for collaboration where appropriate is reassuring for those of us concerned about the current trend.”