The Organization for Competitive Markets is out with a report that it says highlights serious issues with the Ohio Beef Council, but the OBC says OCM’s concerns are unfounded. OCM’s report – jointly issued with the Ohio Farmers Union – highlights what it sees as thin and blurry lines between the OBC and the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association, saying the checkoff and policy arms improperly share expenses like staff salary and overhead costs. OCM also claims inadequate oversight on the part of the Ohio Department of Agriculture. To fix the problems, OCM says the department should “immediately segregate all activity” between the OBC and OCA and allow for checkoff funds to be paid “directly to the appropriate federal or state treasury,” which it says would allow for better auditing. OBC, however, says there are already “comprehensive and robust firewalls in place to assure that checkoff funds are used lawfully and as intended.” As for the collection of funds, OBC says to give the checkoff money directly to a government entity would be “an insult to the producers who work diligently to put beef producer dollars where they will do the most good.”
Access our premium content, receive daily and weekly news updates in addition to our industry-valued newsletters.