Secretary Vilsack and Attorney General Holder began the workshop with opening remarks before leading a roundtable discussion, in which Christine Varney, assistant attorney general for the Antitrust Division, participated with other federal and state officials, on competition issues in agriculture and the livestock industry. After the roundtable discussion, a panel of producers and feeders from throughout the country shared their first-hand experiences and perspectives on the industry. USDA and Justice Department officials then listened to public testimony from audience members.

In the afternoon, another panel discussed trends in the livestock industry, including issues associated with contracting, price transparency and the effects of concentration. The final panel of various market participants will discuss market structure issues in the livestock industry. There will be an opportunity for more public testimony after the final panel.

The workshop was held in Fort Collins, Colo., at the Lory Student Center on the Colorado State University campus and was attended by several key federal and state leaders, including Governor Bill Ritter, U.S. Rep. Betsy Markey, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture John Stulp and Montana Attorney General Steve Bullock.

Videos and transcripts from the workshop will be available for review at a later date on the Antitrust Division's Web site at http://www.justice.gov/atr/public/workshops/ag2010/index.htm - dates.