U.S. Senator Josh Hawley, R-Missouri, is sponsoring a bill he said will put a stop to large meatpacking companies operating as a monopoly.

There have been growing concerns by livestock producers in Missouri and elsewhere of the “big four” meatpacking corporations pricing out smaller competitors. The “big four” are Cargill, JBS, National Beef Packing Company, and Tyson Foods.

Hawley’s bill would remove incentives for large corporations to buy up smaller meat producers, which he said eliminates competition and drives up costs. The proposal follows Tyson Foods’ recent decision to shut down two chicken processing plants in southern Missouri and throwing more than 2,000 people out of work.

Hawley’s bill is similar to past efforts by former Missouri Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler, who had accused the meatpacking industry of collusion and price fixing.

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