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FMI Urges Congress To Enact Credit Card Competition Act

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FMI – The Food Industry Association is asking Congress to pass the bipartisan Credit Card Competition Act.

FMI’s Chief Public Policy Officer Jennifer Hatcher issued the following statement on the Credit Card Competition Act in response to the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Policy’s hearing, titled “Protecting Consumers’ Pocketbooks: Lowering Food Prices and Combating Corporate Price Gouging and Consolidation.” 

“The food industry continues to face headwinds and economic hurdles, such as ever-increasing swipe fees for credit card payments that add 2-4 percent on average per transaction and which cost American households over $1,100 a year. In 2023, merchants’ credit and debit card fees totaled $172.05 billion, an increase of 7.1 percent from the previous year. Of this total, $100.7 billion in fees were assessed on merchants to accept Visa and Mastercard-branded credit cards. 

“Our retailer members with pharmacies must also pay retroactive fees on every prescription to Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs), making it difficult for them to accurately predict their business costs. In addition to these fees, they are often forced to accept take-it-or-leave-it contracts with little or no ability to negotiate the terms.

[RELATED: NGA Welcomes Introduction of Credit Card Competition Act]

“Policymakers can impact these cost pressures by passing the bipartisan, bicameral Credit Card Competition Act that would require more than one routing network on credit cards. They should also focus on reining in exorbitant direct and indirect remuneration (DIR) fees and other anticompetitive PBM practices that have a financial impact on retailers with pharmacy operations and their customers.

“Despite these headwinds, we remain optimistic that food price inflation is heading in the right direction. FMI is pleased with the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) numbers showing that food-at-home was a bright spot in April’s data, providing welcome news for grocery shoppers and demonstrating that the industry’s efforts to engage and partner with consumers to help address high inflation have continued to drive progress.” 

About FMI

As the food industry association, FMI works with and on behalf of the industry to advance a safer, healthier and more efficient consumer food supply chain. FMI brings together a range of members across the value chain to amplify the collective work of the industry.

About the author

Sommer Stockton

Web Editor

Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

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