USDA Settles a Case with Hacienda Central Inc. Resulting in a $1,450 Penalty

Date: 
Monday, December 10, 2018 - 11:30am
Contact Info: 

Release No.: 176-18

WASHINGTON, Dec. 10, 2018 – On Nov. 7, 2018, Hacienda Central Inc. (Hacienda), Jancos, Puerto Rico, a slaughtering packer, waived its right to a hearing, entered into a stipulation agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and paid a penalty of $1,450 for alleged violations of the Packers and Stockyards (P&S) Act.

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service’s (AMS) investigation found that when Hacienda purchased livestock, it deducted a slaughter fee from the proceeds due the livestock sellers.  The P&S Act and regulations prohibits packers from collecting service charges from livestock sellers.  The practice of packers collecting service charges from the livestock sellers is an unfair practice under the P&S Act.

The P&S Act authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to assess civil penalties of up to $27,500 to $28,061 per violation against any person after notice and opportunity for hearing on the record.  USDA may offer alleged violators the option of waiving their right to a hearing and entering into a stipulation agreement to quickly resolve alleged violations.

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, Director, Packers and Stockyards Division, Fair Trade Practices Program, at (515) 323-2586, or by email at Stuart.Frank@usda.gov.

Get the latest Agricultural Marketing Service news at www.ams.usda.gov/news or follow us on Twitter @USDA_AMS. You can also read about us on the USDA blog.

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