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The Factory Farm Campaign
Meat production in the United States has changed dramatically over the past 20 years. Many facilities where livestock are raised today are closer to factories, not the idyllic, small-scale family farms most Americans envision. These “factory farms” are also known as concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). They emphasize high volume and profit with minimal regard for human health, safe food, the environment, humane treatment of animals, and the rural economy. The defining characteristic of a CAFO is that hundreds to thousands of animals (mainly cows, pigs, chickens or turkeys) are confined tightly together and provided little or no access to sunlight, fresh air or room for natural movement. Some facilities produce millions of animals annually.
Factory farms have a long track record of polluting water with manure, which can cause E.coli and Salmonella contamination in drinking water. In the last few years, research has revealed other serious health problems caused by factory farms. According to the American Public Health Association (APHA), the emerging scientific consensus is that heavy use of antibiotics for livestock is creating antibiotic resistance that threatens human health. In light of factory farms’ diverse negative impacts, APHA recently passed a resolution advocating a moratorium on new factory farms.
Nationwide, factory farms negatively impact rural communities as they crowd out small-scale family farms in every sector of U.S. livestock farming and cause significant environmental damage.
Thus, because of their devastating effects, Public Citizen and GRACE are calling for a national moratorium on new and expanding factory farms. Tell your Senator and Representative to support the moratorium!
Want more-in depth information? Global Resource Action Center for the Environment (GRACE), our partner on this campaign, has a comprehensive site at www.factoryfarm.org
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