The White House announced it would devote $1 billion to aid independent meat and poultry producers so that Americans can pay less at the grocery store.
The announcement comes in an attempt to help undercut four powerful meat producers that Biden’s administration has claimed are responsible for surging consumer prices.
The response from Biden’s White House comes after the president was pressured to break up large corporations and monopolies to help drive down prices nationwide, the Washington Post reported.
Biden is not only looking at the meat industry. He also asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate whether oil and gas companies were improperly raising energy prices in November.
According to federal data, the beef industry saw a massive increase in prices in November, where the cost of the meat soared 21% above prices last year.
Overall, food prices saw an increase in November, going up 6.4%, with the index for meat, poultry, fish, and eggs jumping 13%, the Post reported.
The White House has unveiled its plans to cut prices by boosting competition in the meatpacking sector. The plan includes $375 million in grants to help independent meat producers, $275 million in capital, $100 million in training for the meat and poultry workforce, and $100 million to reduce inspection costs on “small and very small processing plants,” according to a statement.
Funding for the plan comes from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan passed by Democrats through Congress in March 2021.
Some experts have accused the Biden administration of redirecting the blame for inflation on large companies, arguing that high consumer demand, which was supercharged by the relief plan, has caused the rapid and widespread inflation, the Post reported.
According to an analysis from the White House in November, large meatpackers saw a rise in profits of 300% during the pandemic. The Biden administration has pointed to this as a reason for inflation in the industry.
However, those in the meat industry, like Julie Anna Potts, the president of the North American Meat Institute, said the calculations “awkwardly and misleadingly combine these sectors and the council’s analysis conveniently excludes data on rising input costs, rising fuel costs, supply chain difficulties and labor shortages that impact the price of meat on the retail shelf,” the Post reported.
Either way, Biden’s plan to fight inflation of grocery store items will go into effect in an attempt to keep your wallet and fridge more full.
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