USA - Poultry farmer chases meat processor

22 Nov 2010

A former chicken grower for Tyson Foods has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to hear his complaint that the Springdale, Ark.-based company treated him unfairly under the Packers & Stockyards Act (PSA), court documents show.
Alton Terry’s complaint has been rejected by eight circuit courts, which have ruled that the farmer must show Tyson’s dealings with him caused injury to competition. Tyson has until Nov. 24 to respond to the filing.
Terry alleged that in 2004 Tyson’s Shelbyville, Tenn., poultry plant began to delay weighing his chickens and would not allow him in the facility to witness the weighing process. He complained to the Grain Inspection, Packers & Stockyards Administration (GIPSA). Later Tyson stopped placing chicks with Terry and terminated his contract, the complaint states.
In 2008 Terry sued Tyson claiming the company violated sections of the PSA that prohibit unfair treatment by packers against producers. The courts have said he must prove that Tyson’s conduct caused injury to competition and pricing in the poultry industry.
In appealing unfavorable rulings, Terry has contended that the PSA subsections do not specify anticompetitive practices.
Proposed revisions to the PSA by GIPSA, which currently are subject to a public comment period, would eliminate the requirement that a producer prove anticompetitive conduct in all cases.

Source: newsroom -

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