Factory Farming / CAFOs

“Auschwitz begins wherever someone looks at a slaughterhouse and thinks: they’re only animals.”

~German Jewish philosopher Theodor Adorno

Page updated 11/25/13  - see “new”

NEW: Factory farming kills!
*NBC shows undercover pig abuse video
*5 modern diseases grown by factory farming
*Factory farms may be killing us

From Huff Post Green: “Why everyone should be angry about factory farming” – includes slide show with useful statistics. Find it here.

10 things everyone should know about free-range turkeys – here’s a hint: They ain’t livin’ the good life. Find it here. Cage-free isn’t cruelty-free.

FARM TO FRIDGE: The truth behind meat production from Mercy for Animals

Shocking video: Walmart pork supplier caught abusing pigs.  “Walmart likes to brag about its low prices, but the hidden cost of Walmart’s cheap products is blatant animal abuse.” Bob Barker introduces the Mercy for Animals video; watch it here or, if you choose not to view, just stop the video and read the text. Then click here for info on “The Hidden Cost of Walmart’s Pork.”

“10 BILLION LIVES”

 

Montana’s former governor has proposed a massive hog production facility in Shelby, MT for export to China. Read more: All  factory, no farm: And the CAFOs go rolling along.  It’s at our blog.

AFO? CAFO?  Here’s the EPA’s definition of an AFO: “Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) are agricultural operations where animals are kept and raised in confined situations. AFOs congregate animals, feed, manure and urine, dead animals, and production operations on a small land area. Feed is brought to the animals rather than the animals grazing or otherwise seeking feed in pastures, fields, or on rangeland. Your operation is an AFO if: You confine animals for at least 45 days in a 12-month period, and (t)here’s no grass or other vegetation in the confinement area during the normal growing season.”

CAFOs–where animals are not just congregated–but are concentrated–are operations that meet the AFO criteria along with other regulatory criteria. Approximately 15% of AFOs are CAFOs. Visit the EPA for more.

FACTORY FARM MAP: This is an excellent tool. Note that it is a snapshot of the year 2007, however. Interactive by state, you can apply filters for the various production species and retrieve data by county (retrieval takes a few seconds in some instances). Below the map, data can be displayed in charts and rankings.  Click here.

*Adirondack Dairy Farm Cruelty: includes text and four videos
*FactoryFarm.com: photo gallery
*FactoryFarming.com: a comprehensive site from Farm Sanctuary
*Mercy for Animals: undercover investigations – video footage

*Behind Closed Doors: Former factory farm & slaughterhouse workers speak out in harrowing accounts (text, not video) from Mercy for Animals

AG-GAG LAWS protect abusers, muzzle whistleblowers, suppress democracy 
Ag-gag defined: HSUS – includes links & videos
Ag-gag laws by state – from SourceWatch
Citizens Against Ag-Gag Legislation on Facebook
“Taping of farm cruelty is becoming a crime” New York Times 4/6/13
“Turn off that camera!” ABC The Blotter 2/5/13
“Undercover activist vows to fight ag-gag laws” ABC The Blotter 3/21/13
Ag-gag loses a BIG one! April 27, 2013  Food Safety News
Hog farmer/lawmaker’s “tape & rape” comment exposes conflict here
Woman facing charges for filming at Utah slaughterhouse 4/29/13 here; charges dropped 4/30/13 here; excellent commentary here, Green is the New Red
NEW: ACLU on ag-gag and freedom of speech; includes current state laws & restrictions – ACLU
GREAT NEWS! TN Governor vetoes ag-gag legislation - here

CAFO – The tragedy of industrial animal factories: Another comprehensive site. After viewing the slide show on the home page, click on “the issue” for an index of topics. NOTE: The book and website advocate the end of factory farming, not the end of all farmed animal subjugation. If you can overlook this, you’ll find excellent information on the abuses of industrial animal agriculture. Below: a 3-minute trailer for CAFO, the book.


CAFO slide show: 16 slides with short accompanying text: click here.

Undercover at Smithfield Foods:  An investigator from The Humane Society of the United States documented the suffering endured by female breeding pigs held in severely restrictive gestation crates on a factory farm operated by a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, the world’s largest pork producer.

Purdue study examines toxic manure results: “Manure runoff from concentrated animal farming operations in Indiana is impacting the reproduction and gender of wild fish, according to this study. The hormone-laden waste contaminates local waterways, leading to 60% of fish embryos being male (in a control setting with fish in uncontaminated water, the ration was close to 50:50). The study’s authors and other fish experts worry that the contaminants may lead to a decline in fish populations. Additionally, waterways contaminated by animal farms had 50% less fish diversity and a 28% higher adult minnow death rate when compared to the uncontaminated waterway.” Find more information here.

The Problem with Factory Farms: a Time Science interview with the author of Animal Factory. Fact: 2% of U.S. livestock facilities raise 40% of all farmed animals.

Cautionary tale from North Carolina: “There are now approximately 2,500 industrial swine facilities raising 10,000,000 hogs in North Carolina’s coastal plain. …Based upon a study…that compared hog to human waste, these hogs are producing more fecal matter in Eastern North Carolina each day than is produced by all the citizens (combined) in North Carolina, California, Pennsylvania, New York, Texas, New Hampshire, and North Dakota. This incredible amount of fecal matter is constantly being flushed from the confinement buildings where these animals are kept under what are often grossly inhumane conditions. Once flushed, the feces and urine from these animals is stored in the open environment in huge earthen sewage pits called lagoons. These lagoons constantly discharge to the surrounding environment. As the lagoons fill up, the waste is sprayed onto heavily ditched fields under the pretext of growing crops. It is a waste disposal system that results in runoff to the public trust waters. It is a major polluter of the air (ammonia, hydrogen sulfide and methane gases), ground water and wetlands, streams, creeks and rivers.” Read more here.

BOOKS with associated websites that include additional resources

Animal Factory by David Kirby

Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer

CAFO Reader – companion to the larger CAFO book

Mercy for Animals: Iowa Ag-gag protest photos. The nation’s first ag-gag bill was signed by Iowa’s governor on March 2, 2012, criminalizing undercover reportage of animal abuse in factory farms. Scroll down at that page for a 1:30 minute video, “Ag-Gag: What are factory farmers hiding? See for yourself.” Yes, it’s difficult to watch, but knowing the truth can set us–and suffering animals–free from diets and lives of corporate greed, cruelty, and oppression.

Alliance for Earth, Life, Liberty & Advocacy – click

Stay tuned…there’s (sadly) more to come.