Attorney provides tips on new government regulations for poultry growing contracts

NASHVILLE, Tennessee – With the U.S. Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) planning to introduce new regulations for poultry growing contracts, the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association recently called on attorney Clayton Bailey of Dallas’ Bailey Brauer PLLC to explain what the changes may mean for the industry.

Watt Ag Net, one of the leading news sources for the global poultry, pig and animal feed markets, published a feature story about Mr. Bailey’s presentation at the Poultry & Egg Association’s 2016 Live Production and Welfare Seminar in Nashville, Tennessee. In the article, he is quoted as telling attendees: “GIPSA is looking into contracts and ready to conduct audits. So don’t be surprised if you get a telephone call from GIPSA soon saying that the agency wants to come to your offices to review documents.”

Mr. Bailey is one of the country’s most-experienced attorneys when it comes to the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921, the federal law designed to insure effective competition and integrity in the nation’s livestock, meat and poultry markets. He has successfully represented some of the world’s top poultry, pork and beef companies in GIPSA-related issues for decades.

During his presentation, Mr. Bailey noted three changes that are expected from GIPSA this fall, including new requirements that:

  • poultry companies report to appropriate state agencies any time a growing contract is terminated based on a grower’s violation of state environmental laws;
  • poultry companies provide their growing contracts to GIPSA for publication; and
  • poultry growers be ranked alongside those with similar housing in the tournament systems that determine flock settlements.

Mr. Bailey also told attendees that GIPSA auditors will be setting their sights on three types of clauses in grower contracts that cover arbitration, confidentiality and biosecurity. He noted that many companies are eliminating arbitration clauses in order to avoid the often expensive arbitration process.

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