NCBA’s Policy Agenda

As the beef industry navigates a challenging legislative landscape on Capitol Hill, key policy priorities are at the forefront of industry stakeholders’ agendas. With margins tight and regular order difficult to achieve in Congress, industry leaders are focusing on crucial areas to ensure the vitality and sustainability of the U.S. cattle industry.

Ethan Lane is the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association vice president of government affairs. He says, “One of the primary areas of focus is the ongoing deliberations surrounding the farm bill. The House Agricultural Committee has made significant strides in advancing legislation that promises to benefit the U.S. cattle industry. The impending markup scheduled is anticipated to bring forth measures that will positively impact cattle producers nationwide.”

Simultaneously, they are closely monitoring regulatory developments under the current administration.

“The Congressional Review Act clock is ticking, prompting heightened attention to regulations affecting the beef industry,” Lane says. “Recent efforts on traceability, product origin labeling, and conservation rules by federal agencies underscore the need for industry vigilance.”

Regarding tax policy, the impending expiration of provisions from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act looms. Of particular importance is the preservation of key exemptions and deductions, including those related to the estate tax.

“With land values soaring and multi-generational transitions at stake, we are committed to safeguarding these provisions during deliberations,” adds Lane.

In addressing emerging challenges, such as the rise of lab-grown meat products, the industry remains proactive. Lane says they are advocating for clear and transparent labeling standards to ensure consumer understanding and choice.

Furthermore, transportation and infrastructure remain pivotal concerns for the beef industry. Efforts to enhance flexibility for livestock haulers and also streamline truck weight regulations are ongoing, aiming to optimize the efficiency of the supply chain and ensure the timely delivery of products to market.

Amidst these policy priorities, the importance of public land grazing and the unique contributions of regions like Wisconsin to the beef industry are also key.

“Wisconsin’s dairy-beef crossover and diverse agricultural landscape exemplify the multifaceted nature of the industry,” says Lane. ” This emphasizes the significance of diverse voices in shaping policy decisions.”