White House puts $1 billion into problem of rising meat prices, blames supply chain 'middlemen'

Food prices have increased 6% in the last year, in large part to due the rising cost of meat

Updated: January 3, 2022 - 9:52am

The White House on Monday announced plans to combat the rising prices for meat and poultry products, including $1 billion in funding from the pandemic-related American Rescue Plan for smaller producers of such goods.

Increased food prices have been one of the most prominent features of the rising inflation rate. Prices across the board for food are up about 6%, with meat and poultry prices accounting for a significant part of the increase. 

Consumer Price Index increases 3.6% in first six months under Biden, analysis

A fact sheet released by the White House reads: "When dominant middlemen control so much of the supply chain, they can increase their own profits at the expense of both farmers – who make less – and consumers – who pay more.

"Most farmers now have little or no choice of buyer for their product and little leverage to negotiate, causing their share of every dollar spent on food to decline."

One goal of the administration's investment is to ensure and stimulate a reasonable amount of competition in the industry, to guarantee that a handful of large conglomerates don't maintain singular control. 

The administration plans to use $375 million in grants for independent meat producers, $275 million in financing that will be available to processors, and $100 million to train workers in the meat and poultry industry.

The announcement of the plan arrives ahead of a scheduled meeting Monday between the president and independents ranchers and farmers.