The Senate Agriculture Committee approved legislation on Wednesday that would require meatpackers to buy a portion of their slaughter cattle on the cash market. The move is part of the USDA’s efforts to ensure fair prices and enforce fair-play rules in the highly concentrated meat industry. This approval comes after the House of Representatives passed a companion meat investigator bill that would hire a USDA special investigator to oversee the fair-play rules and enforcement.

While the Wednesday legislation was quickly passed, it didn’t cross desks without murmurs of descent. Five Senate Ag Committee members voiced reservations about mandatory cash purchases of cattle. Cash sales are popular in the Midwest and northern Plains, while alternative marketing arrangements like formula pricing and delivery contracts are more common in the Southwest and southern Plains.

Read more on livestock marketing reform legislation here.