Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version



Published in Cornhusker Economics. February 7, 2001. Produced by the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska-Lincoln .


The Livestock Mandatory Reporting Act of 1999 (the Act), which went into effect February 1, 2001, requires meat packers to report detailed price and quantity information on cattle, hogs, lambs and products to the USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) on a daily basis. Historically, packers reported to AMS on a voluntary basis. However, “as more animals are being bought and sold under marketing arrangements where neither the arrangements nor the final purchase prices are publicly disclosed, ... it has become more difficult for producers to determine the actual prevailing purchasing price for livestock..” So, by making reports to AMS mandatory rather than voluntary, the Act aims to make livestock markets more transparent, thus “provid[ing] timely, accurate, and reliable market information, facilitat[ing] more informed marketing decisions and promot[ing] competition in the industry.”