The two current commissioners of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved another final order and consent agreement with a trade association, this time with the National Association of Animal Breeders, Inc. (NAAB).WHAT HAPPENED:
- NAAB is a non-profit corporation of approximately 24 member businesses that compete to sell dairy cattle semen to US dairy farms for artificial insemination of dairy cows. Together, the NAAB membership accounts for more than 90 percent of sales to US farms.
- In 2006, NAAB entered into an agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop genomic testing of dairy bulls to predict a bull’s ability to pass along commercially important traits to its daughters, like high milk yield.
- The new technology, called Genomic Predicted Transmitting Ability (GPTA) was developed by mid-2008.
- In late 2008, NAAB implemented rules limiting access to the GPTA technology. Specifically, (1) only a NAAB member could obtain a dairy bull’s GPTA; and (2) the NAAB member obtaining a GPTA must have some ownership interest in the dairy bull.