Session of 1999
House Concurrent Resolution No. 5038
By Committee on Agriculture

  9             A  CONCURRENT  RESOLUTION urging the United States Congress
10             to further investigate mergers in agribusiness.
12             WHEREAS,  The United States is in the midst of a merger wave as
13       most major sectors of our economy are moving toward fewer and larger
14       operations; and
15             WHEREAS,  Although this movement may increase efficiency of such
16       companies, it is critical that these changes do not come at the expense of
17       family farmers and ranchers; and
18             WHEREAS,  Farmers are already suffering from the lowest prices in
19       52 years and ill-advised and illegal mergers will drive down prices even
20       more; and
21             WHEREAS,  Certain structural changes in the farm economy such as
22       the Monsanto-DeKalb and Cargill-Continental mergers may adversely
23       affect the ability of family farm agriculture to cope in a changing world
24       economy; and
25             WHEREAS,  With such declining prices, further concentration in ag-
26       ribusiness will significantly diminish competition from companies that
27       buy, store and trade the farmer's commodities and fewer markets in rural
28       areas will aggravate an already serious agricultural situation; and
29             WHEREAS,  Merger of agribusiness concerns could stifle or drive out
30       competition in local markets and control key distribution points for com-
31       modities produced by Kansas farmers; and
32             WHEREAS,  Horizontal mergers increase market concentration, in-
33       crease the likelihood of collusion and result in unilateral anticompetitive
34       effects; and
35             WHEREAS,  These mergers involving feed suppliers and agricultural
36       merchandisers limit availability of competition for inputs such as feed,
37       seed, fertilizer and local marketing opportunities while Kansas family live-
38       stock and grain producers are faced with increasing limited sources of
39       suppliers; and
40             WHEREAS,  These mergers of agribusinesses pose a threat to the
41       availability of marketing options for Kansas farmers and to the viability
42       and continued existence of many family farms in Kansas: Now, therefore,
43             Be it resolved by the House of Representatives of the State of Kansas,

HCR 5038


  1       the Senate concurring therein: That the Legislature of the State of Kan-
  2       sas urges Congress to further investigate mergers in agribusiness; and
  3             Be it further resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send
  4       enrolled copies of this resolution to the President of the United States,
  5       the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United
  6       States House of Representatives, the Secretary of the United States De-
  7       partment of Agriculture, the United States Attorney General and each
  8       member of the Kansas Congressional Delegation.