The US Supreme Court ruled last month that a multimillion-dollar generic promotion funded by producers but ordered by government is considered "government speech."

The high court said the programme, which required beef producers to pay $1 per head of cattle, enjoys protection from challenges to the mandatory nature of the program and its benefits, unlike legal requirements that bind private companies and associations.

While some producers objected to the mandatory fee, citing their freedom to choose how to promote their products, most support the promotions because of the overall benefit to industry. Currently, there are active US federal research and promotion programs for watermelon, potatoes, mushrooms, mangoes, avocados and cultivated blueberries.