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Concentration and Competition in U.S. Agribusiness

James M. MacDonald, Xiao Dong and Keith O. Fuglie

No 337566, Economic Information Bulletin from United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service

Abstract: Market concentration, and its impact on competition, has attracted growing public scrutiny as well as several Federal policy initiatives. Critics argue that increased concentration has led to higher consumer prices, lower prices paid for farm commodities, increased corporate profits, reduced wages, less innovation, and waning productivity growth. The issues surrounding concentration extend to agribusiness, particularly to three agribusiness sectors where concentration has increased over time: seeds, meatpacking, and food retailing. This report details how consolidation proceeded in each sector—with attention to the important driving forces—and the effects on prices and innovation. Because mergers among firms have played a role in each sector’s consolidation, the report also describes Federal antitrust policy regarding mergers and its implementation in these sectors.

Keywords: Agribusiness; Agricultural and Food Policy; Crop Production/Industries; Demand and Price Analysis; Industrial Organization; Livestock Production/Industries; Marketing; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 57
Date: 2023-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr, nep-com and nep-ind
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.337566

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