Packing Industry Committee's Recommendations on Meat Policies

Identifier

WWP19426

Description

The Packing Industry Committee makes several recommendations about meat policies.

Source

Hoover-Wilson Correspondence, Hoover Institution, Hoover Institution Archives, Stanford, California

Publisher

Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum

Language

English

Text

M E M O

Having examined the suggestions of the Sub-Committee, we make the following recommendations to the President with regard to meat policies:

R E G U L A T I O N

1. We recommend the continuation of regulation of the meat packing industry by the Food Administration and do not favour governmental operation of the industry unless it should be found impossible to enforce regulatory measures.

2. The auditing of the packers’ bi-monthly profit returns to the Food Administration and the installation of uniform bases of accounts by the Federal Trade Commission should proceed as already settled between the Federal Trade Commission and the Food Administration. The present regulation by the Food Administration as to maximum profits should be continued to July 1st. In the meantime the Federal Trade Commission should report upon the reasonableness of these maximums. If found reasonable they should continue in effect until further notice. If found unreasonable such maximums should be made effective as facts warrant.

3. The packers should be required to report wholesale prices received for meat products and the transfer value of the principal by-products from their meat departments should be furnished by the packers to the Department of Agriculture for publication in their market reports as the Department may require.

4. The reports showing the wholesale prices of food dealers, now being made to the Food Administration, which includes the wholesale prices made by packers’ branch houses, should be given local publicity to consumers.

5. The stockyards should be placed under license and regulation by the Department of Agriculture which should also establish a governmental system of animal grading under suitable regulations and methods of price reporting of actual transactions. Daily reports should be made on distribution and destinations of livestock, meats and other products from principal packing points.

GOVERNMENTANDALLIEDPURCHASES

1. The Food Purchase Board established last November by the Food Administrator, and the Secretaries of the War and Navy, with the approval of the President, for the co-ordination of policies in purchases of official governmental agencies of certain food commodities, should extend its activities to the co-ordination of the purchase of packing house products by all official agencies.

2. It must be recognized that the meat purchases thus co-ordinated through the Food Purchase Board during periods of sparse marketing or during periods of extreme production broadly influence market levels in meat and in animals and, at such times as they do influence prices, they should be made in accordance with economic conditions as they affect both producers and consumers and at prices on one hand sufficiently stimulative to ensure production at a point necessary to furnish supplies of meat during the war period, and, on the other hand, at such ranges as will prevent extortionate prices to the consumer. The packers’ profits should be controlled so as to prevent excessive charges and so that the policy already declared by the President in cases where war buying dominates the market, that “We must make the prices to the public the same as the prices to the Government”, may be effectuated.

G E N E R A L

1. The Food Act gives no regulatory powers with regard to retailers. It is desirable, however, that an investigation should be made of the conditions of the retail trade with view to determination of some constructive effort that may be made in retail distribution and it is recommended that a committee should be created for thorough investigation of, and recommendation upon, the subject.

2. The privately-owned cars of the packing industry should continue to be controlled by the Director General of Railroads.

Original Format

Report

Files

http://resources.presidentwilson.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/D09426B.pdf

Tags

Citation

“Packing Industry Committee's Recommendations on Meat Policies,” 1918 May 27, WWP19426, Hoover Institute at Stanford University Collection, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.