“There is opportunity for cattle producers.” That statement comes from USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Greg Ibach, who spoke to those gathered in Bismarck at the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association Convention. Particularly, there are opportunities for both Congress and USDA to make adjustments in the cattle markets. According to Under Secretary Ibach, there are suggestions offered in a report issued by the agency a couple months ago. A fire at a beef packing plant in Holcomb, Kansas last fall was one event that triggered the investigation into the cattle markets. The other was the coronavirus pandemic.These events have shifted the discussions in the food supply chain. “Consumers have become a little more aware of where their food comes from and that there can be food shortages,” said Ibach. “They’ve also become more interested in reaching out to cattle producers to purchase beef. That ripple effect has been seen in our custom exempts and the smaller, federally and state inspected plants to be able to handle that shift in demand.” Under Secretary Ibach concluded by saying there are risk management programs available to livestock producers that have been improved over the course of the summer. Listen to this exclusive Red River Farm Network interview with Under Secretary Ibach.