WASHINGTON, June 22, 2020 – As part of its commitment to ensuring fair and competitive markets for the livestock, meat and poultry industries, on May 27, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a complaint against Mark K. Holder, doing business as Mark Holder Livestock (Holder) of Hartsville, Tenn., for alleged violations of the Packers and Stockyards (P&S) Act.
An investigation by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service revealed that in September 2018 through November 2018, Holder failed to pay and failed to pay, when due, for livestock purchases. In its complaint, USDA alleges that Holder issued insufficient funds checks in six transactions, and still owes $16,060 for livestock purchases.
The P&S Act requires subject entities to issue the full payment for livestock by the close of the first business day following purchase and transfer of possession. Failure to timely pay for livestock purchases and failure to issue the full payment for purchases is an unfair trade practice and a violation of the P&S Act.
The P&S Act authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to assess civil penalties up to $28,061 per violation against any person after the notice and opportunity for hearing on the record. If the allegations are admitted or proven in an oral hearing, Holder may be ordered to cease and desist from continuing violations of the P&S Act and assessed a civil penalty.
The P&S Act is a fair-trade practice and payment protection law that promotes fair and competitive marketing environments for the livestock, meat, and poultry industries.
For further information about the Packers and Stockyards Act, contact Stuart Frank, Packers and Stockyards Division, at (515) 323-2586, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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